GUIDE TO STAY HEALTHY IMMUNE SYSTEM IN ALL SEASONS
Low temperatures cause colds, flu and discomforts, and the immune system is alert to face pathogens.
How to strengthen the immune system with food?
Symptoms like more tired than usual, muscle aches, brittle hair or gastrointestinal disorders warn that the body’s defenses are low. In winter, the immune system goes into high alert to face pathogens: viruses, bacteria, fungi revive even at this time of year. The immune system is a system that works with two lines of defense: one is natural, formed by the skin and mucous membranes, and other acquired, which specifically responds to each infectious agent.
On this complex system depends the overall health; if it does not operate properly, the body gets sick. Several factors can affect health: from the weather and pollution, to lifestyle, stress, lack of exercise and poor nutrition mainly.
Therefore, since in winter the most common diseases of this season appear, it is important to increase the defenses and take necessary measures to protect the body. Diet and physical activity are the keys.
Balanced nutrition Tips for The Immune System
The body defenses created by the intake of nutrients, especially protein, minerals and vitamins. For example, when people are dieting they restrict fat. While it is important for weight control, this restriction affects the functioning of the immune system. In this sense, the origin or quality of the fat consumed is very important. Therefore it is critical to reduce the consumption of saturated fats and include those polyunsaturated fat, from fish, nuts and olive oil, to ensure a balanced supply of nutrients. Also consume dairy, daily, given ideal containing proteins to form antibodies. In Winter We Should consume those that contain prebiotics that increase the body’s defenses.
Consumption of fruits and vegetables should also be enhanced at this time of year, because they provide vitamins and minerals, as well as strengthening the immune system.
At this time of year respiratory ailments are very common (colds, coughs, flu and bronchitis), and vegetables such as chard, spinach, artichokes, pumpkin and cauliflower are the stars elections. Also as allium vegetables (onions, garlic, leeks) have mucolytic and antiseptic properties, thus soften the mucus, promote the expulsion of mucus and act against germs (bacteria or viruses) or aggravating cause of the affection. Even sulfur compounds that form its essential oil exert antispasmodic and antibiotic action.
Meanwhile, kiwi, lemon, mandarin, orange and grapefruit fruit this season are ideal to consume and get the vitamins that the immune system needs. Even provide fiber and carotenoids, plant pigments with antioxidant capacity.
It is also advised to consume broccoli (rich in vitamin C and antioxidants), tomato (provides fiber, vitamins C and E, and has excellent antioxidant capacity) and cabbage (source of vitamin C, potassium, iron and fiber). Basically in winter the following nutrients must be present:
Vitamin C increases the production of interferon (cell substance that prevents viruses cause infections) whereby immunity increases. Furthermore, it is necessary to form collagen, an essential component of cell membranes, therefore this vitamin helps maintain the natural barriers against infection. Foods such as citrus (lemon, orange, grapefruit), kiwi, pineapple, peppers, tomatoes, vegetables from the cabbage family, fruits and vegetables generally contain it.
Vitamin E: several studies have shown that the immune response increases. It is derived from whole grain cereals (bread, rice and pasta members), olive oil, green leafy vegetables and nuts.
Vitamin A is an essential to prevent infection and maintain healthy mucous role. It is found in green vegetables, red, orange and yellow fruits like cherries, melon and watermelon, eggs and dairy.
Vitamin B: Its deficiency causes an impaired immune system. This vitamin complex is obtained from plant foods (vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains, legumes) and animals (meat and offal, seafood, eggs, dairy products).
Flavonoids are antioxidants and neutralize free radicals, harmful substances to the body. They are present in the seeds of vegetables and fruits, green leafy vegetables, berries, citrus and purple.
Iron: deficiency reduces cell growth and proliferation and the immune response. It is obtained from liver, meat, fish, eggs and dairy smaller proportion.
Zinc deficiency also reduces its proper functioning of the immune system. It is found in shellfish, liver, pumpkin seeds, legumes, nuts, cereals, meat, fish, eggs and dairy.
Selenium deficiency of the mineral affects immunity, bactericidal activity, the antibody response against certain toxic and lymphocyte development. It is present in meat, fish, seafood, cereals, eggs, fruits and vegetables.
Popular and effective nutrition tips for the immune system
1- There are natural solutions to strengthen the immune system:
2- Consume daily, one tablespoon of honey in empty stomach.
3- Drinking cup of infusion of ginseng, besides preventing certain diseases, is used for the treatment of immune related diseases.
4- Eating a salad made with cauliflower, turnip and radish to boost the immune system.
5- Drinking, fasting, juice prepared with a carrot and two oranges.
6- Drinking a daily infusion of echinacea.
It is also recommended:
Adopt a balanced diet, that includes fruits and vegetables.
Drink water. While summer is very important, because heat promotes dehydration in winter the liquid is necessary to thin the mucus and eliminate toxins.
Physical activity, to increase defenses.
Sleep properly, to promote immune functions correct.
Avoid alcohol and snuff. Learn to relax through breathing techniques
Emotional conflicts and stress contribute to a low immune system defenses.
MENU TO LIFT DEFENSES
Breakfast: a cup of skim milk, two slices of bread with jam light and a sliced orange.
Mid-morning: A infusion and applesauce.
Lunch: homemade vegetable broth, a bowl of noodles and chickpea stew with garlic, broccoli, peppers and a teaspoon of shredded cheese, light. An orange.
Snack: grapefruit juice with a slice of brown bread with low fat cheese.
Mid-afternoon: an infusion five almonds.
Dinner: salad with beet and carrot soup with lean meat, corn, celery, leek, pumpkin and carrot. Two tangerines for dessert
THE KEY ENERGY BREAKFAST
Perform the four main meals, it is essential to increase the body’s defenses. However, breakfast is THE meal of the day for several reasons:
It is nutrient replenishment, after several hours without eating during the night.
It provides the energy needed to start daily activity.
Increases physical and mental performance.
Improves memory and concentration.
Helps control appetite lunchtime.