In a world where maintaining individual health to #FlattenTheCurve is increasingly important, antioxidants are an effective immunity-boosting solution.
Antioxidants can be obtained simply by regularly eating the right foods.
This winter, consider increasing your intake of vegetables, nuts, some red meat and even dark chocolate.
Antioxidants are chemical compounds that protect cells against damage due to oxygen caused by free radicals.
While free radicals weaken and break down healthy cells, antioxidants help protect the body against them and curb illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes cancer, as well as viruses including COVID-19.
These antioxidants help strengthen the body, supporting and maintaining your health during the pandemic by boosting immunity.
A popular antioxidant for the common cold, Zinc keeps the immune system strong and fights infections, supports growth and helps to heal wounds by repairing body tissues.
A medical journal article from Cochrane revealed that administering the antioxidant within 24 hours of the onset of symptoms reduces the duration and severity of the common cold.
Delicious dishes that are high in Zinc include:
Here are some individual ingredients high in Zinc:
Zinc deficiency can cause someone to become more vulnerable to disease and illness. In children, a deficiency can even result in growth impediments.
Known as the master of all antioxidants, glutathione is a powerful antioxidant found in plants, animals, fungi and some bacteria.
Apart from boosting immunity, the right levels of glutathione can reduce oxidative stress (decreasing the chances of cancer and disease), improve psoriasis, reduce cell damage and fight autoimmune disease.
Meals that incorporate glutathione include:
Individual ingredients that are high in glutathione include:
According to Healthline, glutathione levels in the body decrease as a result of aging, stress, environmental toxins and poor nutrition.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that boosts the immune system and carries many health benefits.
Vitamin C helps stimulate the immune system, helping fight infectious disease, viruses, bacteria and foreign invaders.
Delicious meals that incorporate Vitamin C include:
Ingredients that are high in Vitamin C include:
The body does not produce Vitamin C on its own, and so needs a daily intake from food.
Vitamin E is another antioxidant that boosts overall immunity by helping the body fight off infection and repair damaged cells.
“Many scientific studies show people who consume lots of foods that are rich in vitamin E have better health, including lower rates of heart disease, strokes, several cancers, and Alzheimer’s disease,” says Dr Anthony L. Komaroff, M.D, Professor of Medicine and editor-in-chief of the Harvard Health Letter.
Delicious dishes that incorporate Vitamin E include:
Foods that are are high in Vitamin E include:
Low Vitamin E levels can lead to red blood cell breakage as well as nerve damage.
A strong antioxidant that helps the body fight inflammation, quercetin is a natural plant pigment that is found in many vegetables, fruits and grains and gives many fruit, flowers and vegetables their colours.
Quercetin reduces the risk of chronic diseases, such as diabetes, boosts immunity, reduces inflammation, eases allergy symptoms, fights cancer, reduces the risk of chronic brain disorders and reduces blood pressure.
Tasty meals that that contain quercetin include:
Boost immunity by adding quercetin to a diet using:
To find out which ingredients can help boost immunity naturally, read our story here.
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