Food and good nutrition provide the best immune system to defend ourselves from foreign agents and get sick less frequently, these include food, drinks and also some habits that it is advisable to incorporate.
The cold season is still in full swing. The constant change in temperature increases susceptibility to a runny nose and a sore throat. Also: in this season we retreat more and more to closed and warm rooms. If many people are in the same place at the same time, pathogens can spread particularly quickly.
In an experiment in the United States, a company conference table was impregnated with harmless viruses. After four hours, these viruses were practically detectable throughout the building. Cold and flu viruses spread at an incredibly fast rate ...
How do we get it?
Viruses can survive for up to two days if they stick to an object (for example, a phone). If we touch it and then touch our faces, they can settle on our mucous membranes through the nose, mouth, and eyes which, in turn, are particularly vulnerable in the cold season. The reason: in heated rooms, the humidity of the air is so low that they dry out and their protective function deteriorates.
There is also infection from small drops of saliva. If a sick person coughs or sneezes, the viruses fly in droplets through the air, at a distance of up to three meters. Whoever is standing next to him will inhale the pathogen. Then they will multiply in the respiratory tract and we will be infected. To transmit a cold, quite large droplets with thousands of viruses are needed.
These only stay in the air for a few seconds before falling to the ground. However, the situation is different with influenza viruses: here, the finest particles that last a long time in the air are enough to cause an infection. Even if the sick person has left the room, you can still get infected.
This is how we can protect ourselves with these immune system boosters
The fact that not everyone gets sick is mainly due to the body's defenses. A strong immune system kills invading viruses before they can multiply. Here's how you can strengthen your defenses: Get at least seven hours of sleep a night. If you ventilate for 10 minutes 3-4 times a day, you will eliminate most of the viruses in the air.
Drink at least 1.5 liters of water a day. Putting a bowl of water on the heater increases humidity and keeps mucous membranes tough. And finally, the most important protection: wash your hands frequently.
1. Broccoli blocks viruses
The vegetable substance sulforaphane contained in broccoli has multiple benefits. Studies show that it activates immune cells in the blood and increases the production of antibodies. Our advice: so that this valuable ingredient does not get lost, do not cook the broccoli, instead steam it. You can enjoy it as a side dish twice a week.
2. Hot ginger water to boost the immune system
Ginger is considered a natural anti-inflammatory. The essential oils and spicy substances from the roots have an antibacterial effect and increase blood circulation.
Our tip: cut a thumb-sized piece of ginger into thin slices. Add it to 1 liter of boiling water and let it steep for at least 10 minutes.
Below you can read more information about the preparation of ginger water to take advantage of all its benefits.
3. To the bathtub!
As a way of prevention or at the first signs of a cold, a full bath helps your immune system. This stimulates blood circulation, relaxes muscles and relieves body aches. Body temperature rises slightly due to heat; improvement is immediately felt. Our tip: add mountain pine or thyme oil to the water. They have a great expectorant effect.
4. Use the power of beets
Containing vitamins and minerals such as potassium, iron and folic acid, beets are a true source of immune properties. In addition, the red dye betanin supports liver and biliary function. In this way, substances that cause diseases can be quickly removed from the body. Our advice: beets taste better as a salad: 1 beet and 1 grated apple, mix with a little olive oil, vinegar, 1 teaspoon sour cream.
5. Pumpkin benefits you internally
Pumpkin pulp contains a large amount of beta-carotene, which promotes the development of healthy cells of the mucous membrane in the mouth and nose. Thanks to their high amount of zinc, the seeds can also be a delicious snack. Our tip: Hokkaido orange is particularly good and delicious among pumpkins. After chopping it, cut it into cubes, fry it in rapeseed oil. Cook for 15 minutes.
6. Rose hips are vital as immune boosters
The fruit of the dog rose, rose hip, contains five times more vitamin C than a common lemon. With 1.25 g of vitamin C per 100 g, these berries provide a large part of the daily requirements of this vital substance, which makes our defenses accelerate. Our advice: a glass of canine rose tea every day can effectively prevent infectious diseases.
7. Savor seasonal kale
Kale provides abundant iron, potassium, calcium and vitamin C. It has a particularly stimulating effect on the immune system due to the folic acid it contains. This stimulates cell division and therefore keeps the mucous membranes intact in the mouth and in the gastrointestinal tract. Our tip: enjoy a hearty cabbage stew twice a week or prepare these greens as a side dish.
8. Chicken broth eliminates inflammation
This soup provides us with proteins that inhibit inflammation in the nose and throat. It also supplies zinc and optimally strengthens our immune system.
9. Pistachios relieve the immune system
The selenium in the kernels of pistachios intercepts the contaminants we ingest with our food. Result: the immune system is relieved and strengthened. Our tip: a small handful of unsalted pistachios can provide your daily supply of selenium.
10. Echinaceas prevent viruses and stimulate the immune system
The active ingredients in red echinacea strengthen your immune system. These ensure that the body's own defense cells (leukocytes) multiply faster and at the same time fight the spread of viruses and bacteria. Our tip: enjoy 1 herbal tea with an echinacea flower every day.
Breaking your fast by bingeing on large portions of junk foods will turn out to be counter-productive. When you're fasting for 12 to 14 hours, you are likely to be ravenous when the fasting window ends. But overcome your instinct to eat lots of food and instead break your fast with a modestly-sized and healthy meal.