As the days get shorter and the weather gets colder, the importance of immunity becomes more apparent.
Cold and flu season is upon us - not to mention the seemingly endless COVID-19 situation - which means you need to start thinking of ways to strengthen your immune system.
Nothing ruins a work week like coughs, runny noses, sore throats, and congestion passing through your family like wildfire.
While there’s no surefire way to guarantee you won’t get a cold in the coming months, there’s plenty you can do to strengthen your immune system and ensure you lower your chances of getting sick.
If you’re trying to eat seasonally, you’ll love these fall foods for the many ways they will boost your immunity:
By now, you're probably aware of the many health benefits of plant-based diets, and I think we all know that unhealthy eating makes weight gain and health ailments much more likely. But your diet can also influence your body's immune system.
It’s easy to think of your immunity as something that’s static and unchanging. You’ve probably heard someone say how good or bad their immune system is. While there are other factors that play a part in your immunity, your diet is a factor you can control.
It makes sense when you think about it. Have you ever felt horrible after eating fast food or some other unhealthy meal? If the food you eat can make you feel like that, just think about what it can do to your immune system.
So, what's the key to better immunity? Stick to whole foods. Too much unhealthy eating and highly-processed foods can wreck your immune system.
Too much sugar is a great example. When you consume foods that are high in sugar, it can be harmful to immune system cells that attack bacteria.
Consuming sugar significantly slows down our healing process by flooding our bloodstream with glucose as opposed to the necessary vitamins and antioxidants to boost immunity. This “crowds out” the ability for our bodies to absorb the nutrients we need in a time of immune defense.
Glucose can negatively affect your white blood cell’s ability to fight infections in your body. Scientists measured patients with a blood sugar level of 120 and noted that the white blood cell’s ability to absorb and destroy viruses and bacteria was reduced by up to 75% for 4 - 6 hours. So the first thing we can recommend for people during this time is to remove all processed sugar and refined grains from your diet.
The best way to keep your immune system running like a well-oiled machine is to stick to a nutritious diet built around whole foods. Your immune system needs plenty of energy from the right nutrients to work to its full potential.
Since cold and flu season begins in the fall, let’s examine seven great fall superfoods that are perfect for strengthening your immunity. To make things even easier for you, we’re also providing a healthy and tasty recipe to go with each superfood:
Root vegetables are absolutely packed with concentrated levels of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients that you can’t find anywhere else. Because they grow underground, their nutrients are elevated because of the challenging environment they have to grow in. When we consume these veggies, we also receive their protection for our immune system. Not only that, root veggies pack a power punch to nourish your heart, liver and GI system.
The best of the best for root vegetables include turmeric, ginger, beets, rhodiola and carrots. Rich in jewel-toned colors, these comforting veggies can be eaten in stews, salads or even in our delicious Revive Beets + Roots or even our Immunity Wellness juices.
Featured Recipe: Red Velvet Beet Cupcakes, featuring our very own Revive Beets + Roots.
The tastiest part of the pomegranate is actually its seeds. Slice a pomegranate into sections as if you were cutting an apple, and then pop out the seeds to enjoy the sweet snack. These seeds might not seem like much, but they pack a punch.
Full of antioxidants, pomegranate seeds are proven to have a number of health benefits like combating arthritis and lowering cholesterol. You can also opt to drink pomegranate juice, which is an effective concentration of the many important nutrients found in the seeds. Pomegranates contain three types of antioxidants: anthocyanins, tannins, and ellagic acid.
These antioxidants are vital to keeping our body's cells healthy enough to fight off viruses. Antioxidants also assist with reducing inflammation, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, and preventing damage to our organs.
Featured Recipe: Berry Bliss Smoothie Bowl, with pomegranate seeds as a delicious topping!
Garlic is so popular because, let's face it, it helps make our meals so much tastier. But that's not all garlic is good for. Garlic is also full of compounds that help our immune systems fight off germs.
More specifically, these compounds are known for boosting some types of white blood cells and helping with the disease-fighting response when they encounter viruses like those that cause the flu or common cold.
If that sounds too good to be true, then chew on this: Garlic's immunity benefits are backed by science. Studies have shown that garlic not only reduces the risk of becoming sick, but it also reduces he length of sicknesses and even lessens the severity of symptoms.
Featured Recipe: Asparagus Quiche with Tarragon, featuring three cloves of garlic.
Sweet potatoes are one of the best natural sources of the plant-based compound beta-carotene. Your body converts this compound into vitamin A, which is essential to a healthy immune system. In fact, lower levels of vitamin A in your blood are associated with reduced immune function.
Vitamin A is also very important for maintaining the health of mucous membranes, especially in your gut. Your gut is especially important for immunity because it's frequently exposed to pathogens that cause disease. If you want to strengthen your immune system, start with your gut and start with sweet potatoes.
Featured Recipe: Roasted Veggie Quinoa Bowl, including a curry roasted sweet potato!
Much like pomegranates, cranberries are packed with antioxidants. Cranberries, specifically cranberry juice, is often associated with improved urinary tract health. While that's a great reason to make cranberries part of your diet, this fruit also provides exceptional immunity support.
Consistently consuming cranberries leads to enhanced immune cell performance, priming your immune system for activity and making sure you're ready for any challenge that comes your way.
The immune system benefits are just one aspect of the health benefits cranberries offer, which is why we feature cranberry seeds in our Vegan Vanilla Proteini. Packed with antioxidants, omega 3s as well as 16 amino acids and 8 BCAAs, cranberry seeds are one of the most nutritious seeds in all of nature.
Featured Recipe: Festive Holiday Salmon, topped with a tasty cranberry sauce.
Oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C, which is own to boost your immune system. Just one orange will typically provide more than 100% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C, so how's that for healthy?
Vitamin C is also known to prevent cell damage, lower levels of cortisol (the stress hormone), and encourages the production of collagen. If you're looking for a fruit that helps reduce the likelihood of catching a cold or the flu, oranges are always near the top of the list.
Pumpkins and fall are closely related not only because we like to carve them into jack o'lanterns. They’re also full of nutrients that are great for strengthening your immune system. Much like sweet potatoes, pumpkins are high in beta-carotene.
Beta-carotene, which our bodies turn into vitamin A, is great for fighting infections and keeping your immune system going strong. But pumpkins are also great sources of vitamin C, which will increase white blood cell production to help your immune system work better and heal you faster. Pumpkins are also high in vitamin E, folate, and iron which all help the immune system in their own way.
We encourage you to incorporate all of the above fall foods into your diet, but we know that can be difficult. Since we want to make life easier for you - not harder - we have the perfect solution: Immunity Wellness.
Our Immunity Wellness is a ginger/turmeric drink that will act as your body’s health insurance. Instead of buying immunity wellness beverages in bulk or heading to the store on your way to work every day, enjoy the convenience of a jar of our pressed juice. At just $1 per serving of our organic immune-boosting superfoods, your bank account will look and feel as healthy as you are.
Just like the rest of our products, all you need to do is add water to the powdered juice and you’ll have an immunity wellness drink rich with organic superfoods. Our recipe is comprised of 100% natural ingredients; we don’t use any sugar, fillers, or other added chemicals that could be detrimental to your health. Additionally, every product our team sells is USDA certified organic, certified Vegan, non-GMO, and Kosher.