Due to novel coronavirus, many people are not just living in isolation but desperately seeking ways how to strengthen their immune system. As of now, your immune system is still the best tool for combating coronavirus, as well as many other illnesses.
Though a strong immune system alone might not always do the trick, it definitely can't hurt! If you're trying to boost your health, it's about time to include the following 7 vitamins and nutrients in your daily diet.
1. Vitamin C
We all know that good old vitamin C is one of the best helpers for your entire health. Vitamin C is not only powerful, but it's also pretty easy to find. By including some citrus fruits or bell peppers, spinach, kale, or strawberries, you'll have your daily vitamin C intake easily filled.
At the same time though, vitamin C is also pretty tricky. It's one of the few vitamins that our bodies can't make themselves and we can't even store it sufficiently since vitamin C is water-soluble, meaning you'll largely pee it out since your body can't store it for later use.
If you include fresh fruits and veggies in your daily diet, you'll easily get plenty of it though. Most people won't ever need vitamin C supplements since it's so plentifully found in many foods.
Though researchers have said that vitamin C won't help much for combating coronavirus, it may still boost your immune system and improve your overall health. If citrus fruits and veggies don't belong in your daily diet right now, it's about time to make the change!
2. Vitamin D
This vitamin is a bit of a headscratcher for many at the moment since many need to follow strict quarantine rules and can't really roam around outside. Unfortunately, many people have vitamin D deficiency since even without coronavirus-induced self-isolation they simply lack the time to take long walks under bright sunshine.
Vitamin D might play a crucial role when it comes to coronavirus. As Italy's statistics have shown, those in the biggest danger have high blood pressure. If you eat fatty fish which is packed with vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids, you might lower your blood pressure and reduce inflammations in your body.
In addition to including fatty fish (like salmon, tuna, mackerel, and sardines) in your diet, look for fortified foods and try to get at least some sunlight. Even in isolation, it's possible to use your balcony or just open the window for a bit.
By the way, when it comes to high blood pressure, here are some other foods that might help to bring it down a bit:
- leafy greens
- pumpkin seeds
- cinnamon, basil, and other herbs and spices
- olive oil
3. Vitamin A
Vitamin A is mostly known as a powerful helper for your eyes but that's not where its powers end. Foods that are rich in vitamin A have anti-inflammatory functions as well as antioxidant effects.
It actually plays such an important role that vitamin A deficiency is noted as a risk factor for infectious diseases!
Where to get vitamin A? From everything colorful! Carrots and squash are especially great sources of vitamin A. In addition, try including these in your daily diet:
- blue cheese
- sweet potato
- sweet red pepper
4. Folic acid
Fol…what? Most people aren't even aware of folic acid, yet it plays a crucial role in your body. This B group vitamin helps to make and repair DNA, being largely responsible for your cells' maintenance.
Folic acid is a tricky vitamin since you definitely don't want to overdo it either. Most people won't develop a serious deficiency in folic acid but it's still worth keeping your eye out for foods that are naturally rich in folate. Here are some foods to include in your diet:
- beans and lentils
- spinach, kale and other leafy greens
- nuts and seeds
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Iron is another essential nutrient that, unfortunately, many people lack of. Iron deficiency can create many nasty health problems, including a weaker immune system. As evidence has shown, iron has a fundamental role in developing a strong immune system, so it's definitely not something to take too lightly.
Iron is especially plentiful in animal products like lean poultry or seafood but there's plenty of iron in plant-based sources like beans or kale too.
Over time, more and more people have discovered zinc's awesome capabilities. Some evidence has shown that zinc might help fight off common cold, infections and even help to heal wounds.
Most people are not deficient in zinc but since it's quite easy to include in your diet, you can still keep zinc in mind by eating these nutritious foods:
- red meat
- whole grains
Selenium is another underrated nutrient that has many great benefits, starting with its antioxidant properties which can help to protect you from DNA damage. Selenium deficiency is often related to a weak immune system, so the connection is clear.
It's another nutrient you don't need to overdo with, but to boost your immune system, you can include foods like brazil nuts, eggs, sunflower seeds or sardines in your diet.
Though times are stressful, don't forget a balanced diet. Nothing can replace a healthy nutritious meal that includes a plethora of immune-boosting vitamins. Do your body a favor during these stressful times and perk it up with great nutrients!