What Foods Boost Your Immune System
by team nuut
Eat the colours of the rainbow (&a big dose of vegan protein powder)
Your immune system is a like an army. It prevents foreign substances (antigens) from invading and fiercely protects the linings of your gastrointestinal and respiratory systems. If your health is compromised, B lymphocytes produce antibodies (immunoglobulins) that lock onto specific antigens. These antibodies stay in our bodies, just in case we have to fight the same germ again, which is why once you have a disease like chickenpox, you usually won't come down with it again.
The immune system is an intricate one and requires very specific conditions to operate at its best. It needs macro and micronutrients to operate, and your vascular systems, organs, your diet, sleep patterns, hydration status, and stress levels all impact how effectively your army fights the enemy.
When eating to boost your immune system, there isn't one miracle food that will help; however, eating a diet rich in vitamins and minerals can help keep you healthy.
Unfortunately, the typical modern diet is full of foods like refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and pastries, fried foods, soft drinks and other sugar-laden foods, that produce inflammation that negatively impacts the immune system.
So, what if you overhaul your diet and support it with vitamins, vegan protein powder and herbal preparations? Or make significant lifestyle changes, like joining the gym or following a specific eating style like fasting or the keto diet plan?
It all helps! Making healthy choices every day is the single best step you can take toward naturally keeping your immune system working properly. Every part of your body, including your immune system, functions better when supported by good wholesome nutrition and healthy-living strategies. Some of these include:
• Exercise or move daily
• Aim for 6-8 hours of sleep every night
• Eat a diet high in fruits and vegetables.
• Keep a healthy weight.
• Only drink alcohol in moderation.
• Take steps to avoid infection, like washing your hands frequently.
• Keep stress level down
Choose immune-boosting nutrients
A healthy, balanced diet of fresh produce plays a vital role in running a strong and robust immune system. The following nutrients play an important role in immune health:
Beta carotene belongs to a group of coloured pigments called carotenoids. It's converted to vitamin A in the body and found in many fruits and vegetables like sweet potatoes, spinach, carrots, mangoes, broccoli and tomatoes and (drumroll) nuut protein powder!
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid or ascorbate, is a natural antioxidant essential for keeping you healthy and your body functioning well. Vitamin C-rich foods include citrus fruits, berries, melons, tomatoes, bell peppers, broccoli… and nuut protein powder made using Australian whole food nutrition!
Find out what’s in your daily nuut plant-based protein powder now and sip one every day to help support a robust immune system.
Vitamin D is a hormone that controls calcium levels in the blood, which are crucial for strong bones, muscles and overall health. Sunshine is a great source of vitamin D, along with fatty fish, eggs, milk and 100% juices fortified with vitamin D.
Zinc is essential for many of the body's functions and systems, including the immune system, wound healing, blood clotting, thyroid function, and the senses of taste and smell. It tends to be better absorbed from beef, poultry and seafood. Oysters are a powerful source of zinc. You can also find it in plant-based sources, like wheat germ, beans, nuts, whole grains and tofu.
Probioticsare good bacteria that promote health and keep the normal healthy balance of bacteria in your gut — specifically the lining of the gut which includes the microbiome. You'll find them in cultured dairy products, like yogurt with live active cultures, fermented vegetables, sauerkraut, tempeh, kombucha tea, kimchi, and miso.
Protein is found throughout the body and comprises enzymes that fuel many chemical reactions and the haemoglobin that carries oxygen in the blood.
Protein is made from over twenty building blocks (amino acids). We can't store amino acids, so our bodies either make them or modify others. Nine amino acids, including leucine, lysine, and tryptophan, are known as the essential amino acids, and can only come from food.
Stock up on protein-rich foods, including meat, like chicken, beef, pork, lamb, bison, and game. Include in your diet daily whole eggs, soy, legumes and Greek yoghurt. Fish, including white fish (halibut, sole, snapper) and fatty fish (salmon, sardines, herring), are known for their high levels of protein, as are shellfish like shrimp, crab, clams, lobster, mussels, and scallops (yum!).
Including clean, vegan protein powder in your daily diet is a convenient and effective way to secure your daily protein needs and help boost immunity. It protects you from infections and strengthens your immune function. nuut protein powder from Perth is formulated with a perfectly balanced amino acid profile and added vitamins and minerals to support the immune system. Its secret ingredient is 100% certified organic pea protein for healthy muscles, bones and tissue building and repair.
Here are some common myths and facts about immune-boosting nutrients:
Fact: Chicken soup makes you feel better
According to the National Institute of Health, there are many healing properties of chicken soup that fight inflammation, promote hydration and get mucus flowing. Chicken soup has five things your body needs when you're ill: water for rehydration, protein, vitamins and minerals to support your overall nutrition, and a comforting feeling that will help you relax so you can recover better. Often made by a lengthy and loving process, chicken soup can also provide real psychosocial support (i.e the processes and actions that promote the holistic wellbeing of people in their social world.)
Myth: Vitamin C can prevent illness
Despite being known as a remedy for the common cold, there's no evidence to suggest that a large dose of vitamin C can prevent illness. Chugging down a large dose of vitamin C can slightly reduce the duration of a cold, but only if you take that large dose every single day of the year — even when you're not sick.
Myth: Dairy increases mucus production
Contrary to popular belief, milk doesn't cause the body to make phlegm, the thick, sticky mucus in the lungs and upper airways. Your body usually produces thicker mucus when you have a cold (caused by viruses) or sinus infection (caused by bacteria). When you have a cold, mucus in the nose and throat gets thicker. Allergies, spicy food, and being outside in the cold can result in a more watery nasal leakage.
Fact: An apple a day keeps the doctor away
Well, sort of. If all you eat is fast food and a single apple every day, it alone is unlikely to keep the doctor away. But eating a diet rich in fruit and vegetables will help you get enough vitamins which will support your immune system. In one study, there was no statistically meaningful difference in visits to the doctor for daily apple eaters in the analysis, but it did reveal that an apple a day kept the pharmacist away.
Boost your immune system – on-the-run
Too busy to prepare immune-boosting nourishment? nuut vegan protein powder is highly digestible, bio-available and contains a balanced and complete amino acid profile. nuut sachets are designed to slip into your handbag, sports tote, or desk drawer so a healthy nourishing meal is always on hand!
nuut's range of protein powders is designed in Perth and is ideal for sensitive digestive systems. Apart from supporting your immunity, they are a great tool for weight management, sports performance and recovery, and they provide over a third of your daily nutritional needs. Plus nuut is versatile and can be added to everything from smoothies and nice-cream to healthy brownies and chia pudding. For nuut’s favourite recipes, get shaking and head to the journal.
Keto and Immune Health
The metabolic adaptations that occur while on the Keto diet plan can improve the activity of certain immune cells. A study from researchers at Yale University found that mice fed a Keto diet plan had special immune activation that protected them from influenza infection.
nuut’s best-selling Keto diet plan designed here in Australia by a nutritionist makes going keto easy. a lower-carb, higher-fat eating regime where carbohydrate intake is significantly minimised so your body uses fat (converted to ketones), it is a great way to maintain overall wellness which in turn, supports the immune system.
What Not To Eat
With studies associating high blood sugar levels with impaired immune response, reducing your intake of sugary foods and beverages is important to promote better blood sugar management and immune response. A diet high in salt can impair normal immune function, promote inflammation, and increase your susceptibility to autoimmune diseases, as can too much processed meat linked to increased disease risk and a weakened immune system. Fried foods should also be avoided as they can cause immune dysfunction. Reduce your intake of saturated fats, most commonly found in baked goods, full-fat dairy and red meat. You should also avoid trans-fat, found in biscuits and margarine, which is bad for the heart and causes inflammation.