Support Your Immune System this Cold & Flu Season
Your diet, and overall lifestyle, can play a major role in supporting your immune health. Especially this season, it is important to focus on nutrient-dense foods, adequate sleep, stress management and daily activity to ward off these viruses.
Our healthy prepared meals contain ingredients to help support your immune system and keep you healthy. Plus, with all the time you're saving not meal prepping, hopefully you can catch a few extra z's... sleep is vital to immune and overall health.
Let's look at a few foods, all found on our menu, and what they do to help your immune system function optimally:
Blueberries: This little berry packs a lot of immune power! Blueberries are a good source of antioxidants. Antioxidants are compounds that inhibit oxidation, which is a chemical reaction that can produce free radicals. Free radicals lead to chain reactions that may damage the cells of organisms - antioxidants inhibit these chain reactions.
Cabbage: This leafy green is an excellent source of vitamins A & C. Vitamin A, also known as retinol, helps your body's natural defence against illness and infection (the immune system) work properly.
Carrots: When you were growing up did you learn that carrots are good for your eyes? Carrots contain beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A. Vitamin A also helps vision in dim light.
Chia Seeds: Provide protein, which is required to help make antibodies. Antibodies neutralize pathogens that enter the immune system as unwanted guests! They also provide the essential mineral zinc, which the immune system uses to fight off invading bacteria and viruses.
Citrus: Contains high levels of vitamin C. Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, helps to protect cells and helps with wound healing. Vitamin C also maintains healthy skin, blood vessels, bones and cartilage.
Garlic: Traditionally used in herbal medicine to help relieve cold symptoms associated with upper respiratory tract infections and nasal congestion. Garlic has been used as an antiseptic, antibacterial, and antifungal agent. It boosts the immune system and may help the body resist or destroy viruses and other microorganisms.
Ginger: Although most well known for helping with nausea, it is also traditionally used in herbal medicine as an expectorant and cough suppressant to help relieve bronchitis as well as coughs. Garlic is anti-inflammatory, supports digestion, reduces pain and is rich in antioxidants.
Salmon: A good source of protein, which is required to help make antibodies, an important aspect of our immune system. It is also one of the few natural sources of vitamin D which supports your immune function. Vitamin D helps regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body.
Sunflower Seeds: Provide protein, which is required to help make antibodies, an important aspect of our immune system. They also provide the essential mineral zinc which helps to maintain and support your immune function.
Sweet Potato: Another excellent source of vitamin A & C: both crucial vitamins for maintaining a healthy immune system.
Honey: We couldn't leave honey off of this list, now could we?! Honey has antioxidant and antibacterial properties, which help improve the digestive system and boost immunity. Honey is also a powerhouse of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory.