What Can You Do?
Personally, I don’t want to spend another minute talking about the life-changing circumstances we are currently in but I do like helping people feel empowered. Is boosting your immune system high on your radar right now? Great! But that doesn’t necessarily mean start drinking all the orange juice and eating a salad a day. Some foods are more powerful than others. Here are a few that take the cake when standing up to viruses.
Gimme all the garlic. Garlic contains powerful compounds that fight viruses, including influenza and others. Add minced, raw garlic to homemade salad dressing, veggie dip, or guacamole to boost the anti-viral properties. Chop garlic 5-10 minutes before using to activate the health benefits of Allicin as it needs exposure to oxygen for activation!
Ginga! The ginger root has long been used to prevent and treat common viruses. Research shows that ginger helps prevent viruses from attaching to your body’s cells, and boosts immune function to combat illness. Try sautéing thinly sliced, fresh ginger root for topping salads and soups, or steep it in boiling water with honey and turmeric for an anti-inflammatory refreshment. Indian recipes often include spices, ginger, and garlic all in one recipe!
Nutritional Yeast. Stay with me. The yeast has a type of fiber that offers beta-glucan. When tested, people who consumed 1/2 to 1 spoonful of nutritional yeast daily had 25% less common colds. They also were shown to have fewer upper respiratory symptoms. Beta-glucan works by stimulating an immune defense because the body views it as ‘foreign’. But rather than triggering inflammation, it actually provides an anti-inflammatory component. Nutritional yeast may be a new item to your household but VERY easy to use and, in fact, added to most of my recipes. Stay tuned!
Beans + legumes: Wait, what? Yeah, I’m talking about beans again. Beans (and nuts and seeds) are a great source of zinc, which plays a central role in your immune system. Not only do you get a good dose of zinc, you also get a healthy serving of fiber, which develops the healthy bacteria in your gut. A healthy gut houses 70% of the cells that make up your immune system. Don’t underestimate the power of fiber.
And, more than ever, Always Enjoy the Journey! My passion to help people enjoy the journey with their health motivated me to get in your kitchen with you. If you’d like to:
-> use these immune-boosting foods more often
-> maintain healthy cooking habits
-> get support and inspiration in the kitchen
but don’t know how… then join the Wholesome Membership and receive educational videos, cooking demos, recipes AND more!
Hannah Koschak, RDN, CD
Wholesome Endeavors LLC