Nutrition to boost and nourish during these uncertain times

By Sue Bedford (MSc Nutritional Therapist)

There is a lot going on at the moment and the information and advice is changing day to day, it can be really quite unnerving.

What you can try to do right now is to ensure that you are keeping your body and immune system in tip top condition

You can do this by eating the right foods and also incorporating some exercise each day.

Ginger is an amazing spice

Ginger helps to boost the immune system, contains many essential nutrients and vitamins and plays a role in reducing inflammation in the body, so try to include some fresh ginger into your daily diet.

Oranges are full of the antioxidant

They are also full of vitamin C and contain folate and other B vitamins. Vitamin C is vital to keep the immune system strong and B vitamins are important for the nervous system and help to boost mood, to name a few benefits!

Carrots are packed with beta carotene

They also have vitamin C to zap those free radicals!

So what are the key nutrients needed for a healthy immune system?

Vitamin D
Due to the lack of sunshine over the winter months, our body is low on vitamin D3 at this time of year. What is available is probably regulating the calcium in the blood and so the amount that is left for other functions such as immunity, will be probably somewhat diminished. Good sources include:Wild salmon, sardines, eggs, tuna, shiitake mushrooms and some cereals. Try and squeeze in a walk each day in the fresh air and sunshine!

Zinc
Zinc is an important mineral which boosts the immune system and also assists in wound healing. Good sources of zinc include eggs, poultry, crab, brazil nuts, lobster, soya beans, oysters to name a few.

Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin (meaning that it is lost in the urine, not stored in the body so needs to be replaced). It has a number of important functions including: Wound healing, supporting a healthy immune system as well as maintaining connective tissue which supports major organs and systems. Vitamin C is an antioxidant and helps to counteract some of the free radicals that enter our bodies. As our bodies do not make or store vitamin C, plenty of foods rich in this vitamin need to be included in the diet.

Here are some fruits containing the highest sources of vitamin C

• Citrus fruits and juices, such as orange and grapefruit
• Kiwi fruit
• Mango
• Papaya
• Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries
• Watermelon
• Cantaloupe melons
• Pineapple

Here are vegetables with the highest sources of vitamin C too

• Squash
• Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower
• Spinach, cabbage, turnip greens, and other leafy greens
• Potatoes
• Tomatoes and tomato juice
• Peppers (red and green)

Why not try making this immune boosting mixture

As lemons are abundant in vitamin C along with ginger and its anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-toxic properties, this is a great recipe to help prevent flu and colds and could possibly go some way in helping boost immunity against the current Coronavirus

Ingredients

1 large lemon
200 grams of Honey
1 portion fresh ginger (around ½ inch in length)

Method

Peel the ginger and then chop the lemon and ginger into small pieces and place into a blender.
Add the honey and mix.
Place the mixture in a glass jar and tighten lid. Keep mixture in the fridge.

Adults take two tablespoons per day and children one teaspoon per day.

For more immune and fertility boosting recipes click here

 

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