15 Foods That Boost the Immune System

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Herbs To Boost Immune System
Hemp seed oil also provides a good source of chlorophyll. Satan in the Media 2. One brief description of cordyceps militaris points out some of its benefits. Fact is, your body has all the tools it needs to protect itself without a toxic flu vaccine, so long as you take safer steps — starting today — to boost your immune system. It's most valuable brain support nutrients are Phosphatidylcholine and Phosphatidylserine, along with Lecithin. Nobody wants this to happen, which is why you need to keep your immune system in infection-fighting shape. Isaacs is currently residing in scenic East Texas and frequently commutes to the even more scenic Texas hill country near Austin and San Antonio to give lectures and health seminars.

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20 Ways to Boost Your Immune System Naturally

Natural bioavailable cysteine , as the dipeptide form named "cystine" that can enter a cell and be used to form glutathione, is only present in a very limited number of raw foods heat and processing destroy molecular sulfur bonds in cystine:. Pasteurization of dairy products has taken bioavailable cysteine out of the human diet, making it extremely difficult to provide enough of this crucial amino acid for intracellular glutathione production, thus weakening the immune system.

Natural immune system boosters also include cofactors of glutathione production — certain vitamins and minerals without the adequate amount of which your body cannot produce glutathione, and glutathione enzymes do not work properly.

All these cofactors are listed below, as well as the best natural foods they can be found in: Other natural immune system boosters are:. Melatonin — a hormone and a potent antioxidant that your brain produces while you sleep. That is why it is important to get at least hours of sleep in a pitch black room — light drastically reduces melatonin production. Melatonin is scientifically proven to significantly raise blood glutathione levels. Melatonin in pill form, sold as a sleep aid, is synthetic and NOT a natural product, no matter what is stated on a bottle — I am not considering this kind of melatonin.

Natural melatonin is abundant only in tart sour cherries and tart cherry juice concentrate, especially in Montmorency variety. Some other foods have very small amounts of melatonin in them as well: Milk thistle — silymarin, an active component of milk thistle known to prevent lipid peroxidation, maintain GSH levels, and stimulate the growth and regeneration of damaged liver cells. Liver is the largest store of glutathione in the body and the main detoxification organ. Supplementation with milk thistle should be approached with caution, especially in the presence of liver diseases.

Usual dosage is mg a day. Astaxanthin — a carotenoid and a powerful antioxidant found in salmon, shrimp, lobsters and certain algae to which it gives their distinct pink-orange color. Due to its molecular structure, it is able to act as an antioxidant both inside and outside of the cell.

Astaxanthin is scientifically proven in animal studies to enhance the activity of glutathione enzymes, significantly reduce oxidative stress and to act as a powerful anti-inflammatory. It is impossible to obtain enough astaxanthin from diet alone.

Supplementation with mg a day may be beneficial. More details can be found on our page Astaxanthin and Glutathione. Vitamin D — sunshine is indispensable for maintaining strong immune health, and it is free! Supplementation is still necessary the rest of the year.

Echinacea — an herb well known for its immune boosting properties. However, the exact mechanism of its action has not been identified yet. Tinctures and liquid capsules are considered more potent. Several drops can be administered directly or added to warm water or tea, 3 times a day.

Capsules can be taken every hours. Echinacea can only be used for days because the body gets used to it and does not respond any more — it is useful for a short term immune boost. Elderberry — a bush that produces small dark berries ready to harvest in the fall.

Elderberry is well known for its immune boosting properties, especially its remarkable ability to prevent flu and cold viruses from spreading rapidly in the body. Scientists have not identified the exact mechanism of its action, but hypothesize that elderberries release special compounds that coat viruses and this way prevent them from penetrating and infecting healthy cells.

In addition to this ability to thwart viruses, elderberries are also a source of potent antioxidants, flavonoids and anthocyanins that improve the production of cytokines — protein messengers that improve immune response Barak V, Halperin T, Kalickman I.

The effect of Sambucol, a black elderberry-based, natural product, on the production of human cytokines: Another study confirms the efficacy of elderberries in combating viral infections: Randomized study of the efficacy and safety of oral elderberry extract in the treatment of influenza A and B virus infections. J Int Med Res. Elderberries were successfully used during the outbreak of influenza B virus in Panama in Elderberries are available as tinctures, juice concentrates, syrups, and in capsule form.

This natural immune system booster is a must-have, especially during fall-winter flu season. It is also a good source of antioxidants and enzymes; it contains small amounts of vitamins B1, B2, B6 and vitamin C, traces of magnesium, potassium, selenium and other minerals. Honey is acidic; however, it is classified as an alkaline forming food, just like lemons and apple cider vinegar. Pasteurized and filtered honey, often sold in those cute bear shaped bottles, has greatly diminished antioxidant, vitamin and mineral content and does not provide immune boosting benefits.

Actually, it can do just the opposite — it can suppress immune system, because factory honey bees do not have enough access to flower nectar and are often fed high fructose corn syrup or sugar which alters the chemistry of the end product may it be called "high fructose corn honey"? Supermarket honey can still be used as a natural anti-bacterial substance.

Garlic raw — when raw garlic is crushed or chewed, its cells release a natural antibiotic and anti-fungal compound allicin that helps fight off infections. Garlic also provides the body with much needed sulfur-containing compounds, alliin and S-allylcysteine, which help stimulate glutathione production and, as a result,-the immune system. In addition, raw garlic is rich in almost all glutathione cofactors - vitamin C, B1, B2, B6, magnesium, zinc and selenium, as well as other vitamins and minerals B3, B5, calcium, iron, phosphorus, and potassium.

Research has proven that hot chicken soup increases nasal mucus velocity and possesses anti-inflammatory activity, namely, through the mechanism of the inhibition of neutrophil migration Studies: Saketkhoo K et al. Effects of drinking hot water, cold water, and chicken soup on nasal mucus velocity and nasal airflow resistance.

Chicken soup inhibits neutrophil chemotaxis in vitro. The chicken soup recipe used in research calls for onions, carrots, potatoes, turnips, parsnips, celery and parsley — all of which contribute vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, glutathione cofactors and cysteine although cysteine is not bonded due to processing to help the recovery from cold or flu.

With all this proof, chicken soup is a great short term immune system booster. Probiotics — in the healthy gut hundreds of different types of bacteria numbering in billions work together to break down food into its components.

The best water for your health is one that filters all harmful contaminants, helps to balance pH levels and gives you the added benefit of antioxidants. Be sure to use a reusable non-toxic bottle such as the glass ones made by Lifefactory. Research shows that vitamin D, which is made when our skin is exposed to sunlight, plays a vital role in activating white blood cells that protect the body from illnesses.

The best way to optimize Vitamin D levels is through safe, smart and limited sunscreen-free exposure to the sun.

Mushrooms are also an excellent source of vitamin D. Mycologist Paul Stamets discovered that you can naturally multiply their levels of vitamin D by exposing them to sunlight. Vitamin D-enriched mushrooms are best made from June until September and can be dried as the high vitamin D levels generated will last for more than a year! This is especially beneficial for people living in colder climates.

Too little exercise can lead to a stagnant lymphatic system and weaken the immune system. It is important to note that too much exercise or too vigorous exercise produces corticosteroids which can strain your body and depress immune function. Moderate exercise such as Tai Chi, Pilates, yoga, swimming and walking are good options for boosting immunity. My personal favorite is breathwalking. This master immune booster helps immune cells mature, has an antihistamine effect, controls excess levels of the stress hormone cortisol which can suppress immunity and is antibacterial and antiviral.

It works by increasing the production of antibodies and in particular, raises levels of interferon, the antibody that coats cell surfaces, preventing the entry of viruses. Papaya, bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli, pineapple, brussels sprouts, kiwi, oranges, cantaloupe and kale are all rich in vitamin C. A zinc deficiency affects the ability of T cells and other immune cells to function as they should.

Nuts and seeds are a good vegetarian source of zinc. An alkaline body can prevent disease and is much healthier, as illnesses and infections mainly occur in an acidic body. There is a lot of information on this subject. Learn more about naturally improving your pH balance here. Coconut water contains high amounts lauric acid, which is one of the compounds in breast milk that aids the body in fighting infection.

This medium-chain fatty acid MCFA actually disrupts the lipid membranes of offending organisms. When selecting coconuts and coconut oil, make sure you choose organic ones that are unrefined, unbleached, made without heat processing or chemicals, and are non-GMO.

Restricting calories may reduce levels of compounds in the body that depress your immune response. Those who cut calories by ten percent had smaller improvements.

The finding is intriguing because if restricting calories boosts immunity, it may be an indication that the aging process is slowed down in people who carefully control their diets. A weakened immune response is a well-known sign of aging with T-cells becoming less effective as we grow older.

If you are serious about boosting your immunity, then adding traditionally fermented foods is essential. One of the most healthful fermented foods is kefir. Besides kefir, other good fermented foods include natto, kimchee, miso, tempeh, pickles, sauerkraut, Greek yogurt or labneh, and olives. Propolis is also the richest source of caffeic acid and apigenin, two very important phenolic compounds that aid in immune response.

Please note if you have an allergic or hypersensitivity reaction to bee stings or bee products including honey , you could react to propolis in the same way. These combinations of healing essential oils covers a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity and contain properties that strengthen the immune system.

Turmeric is 5 to 8 times stronger than vitamins C and E, and even strong enough to scavenge the hydroxyl radical, which is considered by some to be the most reactive of all oxidants. Our family cooks with turmeric on a regular basis. There are different variations of this recipe. Studies suggest that people produce three times more interferons, powerful proteins that attack and destroy viral invaders on contact, if they sip 20 ounces of black tea daily.

Credit goes to unique tea antioxidants called alkylamine antigens. These compounds have been shown to rev up interferon production in as little as two weeks. Matcha is the most nutrient-rich green tea and comes in the form of a stone-ground powder, completely unfermented.

It has up to seventeen times the antioxidants of wild blueberries, and seven times more than dark chocolate. According to UCLA researchers, jiggled tea bags release up to twice as many antioxidants as bags that are left to steep untouched. While washing your hands may not affect your immune system directly, it helps prevent infection and illnesses by reducing the amount of germs and bacteria your immune system has to fight. Keep nails short and wash your hands properly with good, old-fashioned hot water and chemical-free soap — especially after using the bathroom, changing diapers and before handling food.

Ditch traditional antibacterial soaps and sanitizers that are loaded with toxins which increase the risk of creating resistant bacteria and over-dry and crack the skin, making transmission of viruses that much easier. Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.

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