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10 amazing superfoods to boost immunity against Covid JN.1

By, New Delhi
Jan 03, 2024 11:57 AM IST

A balanced diet consisting of a variety of vitamins, minerals, fibre and other micro-nutrients can help support immune system and prevent illnesses.

As a fresh spate of Covid JN.1 cases raise concerns across the country, it's important to take steps to strengthen your immune system and put your best foot forward as far as your well-being is concerned. Your immune system is the best defence to fight diseases and infections, and boosting it with the right mix of nutrients as well as healthy lifestyle measures like sufficient sleep, exercise and low stress can be effective against avoiding illnesses. A balanced diet consisting of a variety of vitamins, minerals, fibre and other micro-nutrients is advised at times when flu, respiratory diseases and other viral infections are on rise. (Also read | Covid's JN.1 variant in India: Top signs and symptoms to watch out for)

Your immune system is the best defence to fight diseases and infections, and boosting it with the right mix of nutrients as well as healthy lifestyle measures like sufficient sleep, exercise and low stress can be effective against avoiding illnesses.

As hundreds of Covid JN.1 cases have been identified in different Indian cities from Kerala to Delhi, eating nutrient-filled meals can help fight the infection.

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Dr. Neeti Sharma, Senior Consultant in Nutrition & Dietetics at Marengo Asia Hospitals in Sector 56, Gurugram, shares a list of easily available foods in your kitchen that can significantly boost your immunity.

1. Citrus fruits

Vitamin C is considered a crucial nutrient to fight infections and boost immune system. Thankfully, winter season is abundant in juicy and delicious citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and grapefruits. Rich in Vitamin C, these fruits play a pivotal role in enhancing the production of white blood cells, which are key components of the immune system.

2. Leafy greens

Leafy greens are a storehouse of vitamins and minerals, more particularly vitamins A, C, and K, several B vitamins (including folate); and potassium. These are needed to both boost the immune system as well as maintain an overall healthy body. They have also been known to help prevent certain diseases. Incorporating leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and Swiss chard into your diet can contribute to overall immune health. These vegetables are packed with antioxidants as well.

3. Yogurt and probiotics

The importance of gut health is gaining prominence in the health and fitness world as studies demonstrate how a good gut health is related to robust immunity. Probiotics, found in yogurt and other fermented foods, promote a healthy balance of gut bacteria. A robust gut microbiome is linked to a stronger immune system, making these foods an excellent addition to one's diet.

4. Garlic and ginger

Garlic and ginger are filled with antioxidants and have antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties. Including them in your meals or in morning tea, can help you avail their immune-boosting properties. These ingredients have been traditionally recognised for their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.

5. Nuts and seeds

A handful of nuts and seeds not only help curb those hunger pangs in between the meals, but also provides a strong boost to your immunity. Nuts and seeds, such as almonds, sunflower seeds, and flaxseeds, offer a rich source of vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. These components support overall immune function and contribute to maintaining optimal health.

6. Turmeric

Known for its anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric contains curcumin, which can help regulate the immune system. One must incorporate turmeric into daily cooking or consume it as a golden milk beverage.

7. Green tea

Antioxidants in green tea, such as epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), have been linked to enhanced immune function. Substituting regular tea or coffee with green tea can be a simple yet effective way to boost immunity.

8. Berries

Berries, including blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries, are rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and fibre. One must include a variety of berries in the diet for their immune-supporting benefits.

9. Poultry and lean proteins

Lean protein sources like chicken and turkey are essential for the synthesis of antibodies and immune system proteins. Including these proteins in balanced meals is vital for overall health.

10. Hydration

The intake of right nutrients is as important as drinking sufficient water and staying hydrated. Water supports the immune system by helping cells function optimally and flushing out toxins from the body.

In conclusion, maintaining a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrient-dense foods is crucial for bolstering the immune system. A resilient immune system is an integral part of overall well-being.

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