Here are some simple dietary steps and nutritional tips from Francesca that you can use to support your immune system.
- Vitamin C – a powerful antioxidant that supports your body’s ability to fight viruses. Foods rich in vit C include citrus, berries, peppers, kiwis, pomegranate.
- Vit D – supports and regulates the immune system. Primarily from sunshine so a supplement may be beneficial particularly in Winter.
- Elderberry extract – evidence suggests it has natural anti- viral activity.
- Garlic – has powerful natural anti viral properties so use liberally in your cooking where you can.
- Zinc – critical for optimal immune function – meat, chickpeas, lentils, beans, seeds, nuts, shellfish, eggs. The body can’t store much zinc so ensuring daily intake through diet is key.
- Beta-glucans – modulate and support immune function and reduce cold/flu symptoms. Good food sources include oats and mushrooms.
- Vitamin A – supports innate immune system (first line of defence). Brightly coloured fruit and veg (reds, yellows, oranges) are great sources as well as eggs, butter and liver.
The microbiome, our gut flora, also plays an integral role in our immunity and ability to fight infections and diversity here is key. You can support a healthy and robust MICROBIOME with an abundant and diverse range of fruit, vegetables, herbs, spices, pulses, beans and plant based fibres as this is what they thrive on. Aim to eat a rainbow of colours every day. And of course avoid all refined sugars.
If you would like to discuss gut health, how to support your immune system or health generally then please get in touch.