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Nutrition to Keep Immune Function Strong

image of soup with noodles, broccoli, snow peas and chilis

By Jeannie Bianchi, Licensed Acupuncturist, FABORM -

Good food is the cornerstone of good health. The nutrients we eat play a big role in our wellbeing. Certain fruits and vegetables rich in micronutrients can give our cells a steady stream of foods associated with a healthy immune response. 

Additionally, when we crowd our plate with veggies, we also naturally get higher doses of fiber.  More fiber = more diverse gut bacteria. This has important links to our immune function. 

Dig in to these fantastic fruits, veggies and spices to give yourself a wide array of micronutrients and fiber:

NUTRIENT TIP FOR GARLIC AND ONIONS: let them rest 10 minutes after chopping and before cooking. In this time, the medicinal compounds meld and become more bioavailable.

OTHER FOODS SOURCES OF QUERCETIN include apples (with skins), onions, berries, cherries, grapes and citrus.  Surprise, surprise—some of these excellent foods get marks in two or more categories (onions = kaempferol and quercetin, citrus = vitamin C + polyphenols and quercetin). Read more about this superstar in Herb and Supplement Strategies for Maintaining Strong Host Immunity.

Wondering how to unite these wonder foods into a tasty meal?  How about soup with bok choy, mushrooms and onions simmered with ginger and garlic?  Cap it with some juicy citrus for dessert.  As for the capers–you’ll have to plan on Italian-style salmon simmered with lemon juice, onions, garlic and capers for tomorrow night. 

Buon appetito and stay healthy!

  1. Sanlier N, Guler Saban M.  The Benefits of Brassica Vegetables on Human Health. Scholerna. 2018. 
  2. Calderon-Montano, JM, Borgos-Moron E, Perez-Guerrero C, Lopez-Lazaro M.  A Review on the Dietary Flavonoid Kaempferol. Mini-Review Med Chem. 2011 Apr;11(4):298-344. 
  3. Schwartz S, Sauter D, Wang K. et al. Kaempferol Derivatives as Antiviral Drugs Against the 3a Channel Protein of Coronavirus. Planta Med. 2014 Feb;80(2-3):177-82. Epub 2014 Jan 23.
  4. Adaka S, Adaka R, Shah K. et al.  Garlic: Review of LiteratureIndian Journal of Cancer. 2014; (51)4: 577-581 
  5. Mahasni S, Bukari O. Beneficial effects of an aqueous ginger extract on the immune system cells and antibodies, hematology, and thyroid hormones in male smokers and non-smokers. Journal of Nutrition and Intermediary Metabolism. 2019 March; 15: 10-17
  6. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352385918300598Codoner-Franch, Pilar, Citrus as Functional Food, Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research. 8(4):173-184 · November 2010 
Posted in Wellness