LEVELING UP YOUR IMMUNITY AS A VEGAN

Doing whatever you can do to keep your immunity up during any season is helpful especially during these times of uncertainties . Knowing what can pack that extra punch of wellness will help you to make better decisions especially when you are vegan- not only on what to buy at the market but what to put into your system. Lot's of options often include animal based products so if you are vegan or plant based it's helpful to be able to navigate through what you need the most. Thankfully many of the foods that can charge up your system can most likely be found in your kitchen as seen below. It's important to remember that immunity is very much linked to what's also going on in our gut, so prioritizing gut flora above all else is imperative. As your gastrointestinal system is home to approx 80% of your immune system. A healthy gut contributes to prime immunity. It really is all about balance which means eating more anti-inflammatory foods that are rich in vitamins and phytonutrients (a substance found in certain plants which is believed to be beneficial to human health and help prevent various diseases) Fruits and vegetables contain vitamins and minerals naturally in appropriate quantities to help with our natural immunity organically. Consuming the right ones are vital to boosting your immune system which in turn will let you live your best life. Read on to find out what to incorporate into your daily diet...Cause after all you are what you eat and your health is greatest source of wealth!

GARLIC:
Garlic is antiviral + considered to be one of the most powerful immune enhancers nature has to offer. It's chock full of allicin, a strong antioxidant that will rev up your immune system. It also displays many antibiotic functions against harmful bacteria and infections. It also contains "more than 100 biologically useful chemicals (including alliin, alliinase S-allyl cysteine, diallyl sulfide, and allyl methyl trisulfide), which lower cholesterol and kill off viruses."
BROCCOLI:
Broccoli is a richly loaded powerhouse of nutrients. It is very high in fiber, and vitamin C also containing potassium, B6 and vitamin A. It's been known to benefit digestion, the cardiovascular system on top of the immune system, in addition to anti-inflammatory and cancer-preventing properties. It is also a wonderful source of glucosinolates which offer benefits that may extend well into the prevention of more serious illnesses. In addition, broccoli contains Phytochemicals which are ideal for boosting the immune system. They include "glucobrassicin; carotenoids, such as zeaxanthin and beta-carotene; and kaempferol, a flavonoid" according to the American Institute for Cancer Research.
TURMERIC:
Turmeric, sometimes called Indian saffron or the golden spice is one of the most abundant sources of antioxidants. Making it an ideal yet natural way to help bolster the immune system by increasing the immunomodulating aptitude of the body. Curcumin the most active element in turmeric, has many scientifically-proven health benefits. Including the potential to prevent heart disease, Alzheimer's and cancer.  Since turmeric is antiviral, anti-fungal, an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant it also may also help improve symptoms of depression and arthritis. In addition to being one of the most efficient immunity boosting ingredients out there.
MUSHROOMS:
Who knew that a fav pizza topping of ours and preferred pasta add in was also a super turbo shot of healing?! Mushrooms contain strong compounds that enhance and balance your body’s ability to fight disease and stay healthy. These powerhouse funghi are filled with healing antioxidants and anti-inflammatory elements that get rid of infections, contributes to anti-aging and producing new nerve cells. The natural protective ingredients found in mushrooms work together to fight diseases, viruses, and inflammation to intensify your immunity. According to Lawrence Tredrea, a nutritionist and naturopath “Mushrooms have a constituent called beta-glucans which help increase the production of white blood cells. If your immune system is lowered, mushrooms can help improve the count and function of white blood cells and have a protective effect against cancer." Mushrooms are rich in as well polysaccharides, which aid in supporting and maintaining the framework of your cells (the key to having strong immunity)
GINGER:
Ginger, a proven superfood has been a long time antibacterial favorite in Ayurvedic medicine as it is filled with several immune-boosting benefits. Including decreasing inflammation and congestion during the cold or flu, helping to curb nausea, soothe an upset stomach and abilities to cleanse the lymphatic system, our network of organs- break down and cleanse the toxins we gather in our organs due to its internal heating effects. In addition, ginger root is also a natural blood thinner and contains a phenolic anti-inflammatory compound called gingerol that can reduce that is known to minimize your chances of catching common viruses and possibly relax blood vessels
ONIONS:
Another popular flavoring used in many dishes around the world is also one of your easiest bets on boosting immunity. Readily found in most people's kitchens onion are a simple yet efficient way to charge up. As onions contain a variety of vitamins, minerals and potent plant compounds that have been shown to maximize wellness in several ways. Onions are great because they are high in nutrients but low in calories. They are especially potent in vitamin C which is essential in improving immune health, collagen production, tissue repair and iron absorption. As the Us National Library of Medicine states: "Vitamin C also acts as a powerful antioxidant in your body, protecting your cells against damage caused by unstable molecules called free radicals. Onions are also rich in B vitamins, including folate (B9) and pyridoxine (B6) — which play key roles in metabolism, red blood cell production and nerve function."
Images via Google, Getty
Words written by Meg Vora