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Eat your way to higher immunity

Updated: Aug 2, 2022

The second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic has perturbed us with its colossal impact on the healthcare system leading to immense physical and psychological distress. Nutrition has always been an integral part of every individual’s regular health care management. Now, with the amount of stress we encounter every day, quality nutrition needs to be mandatorily integrated into our daily wellness regime.

Any crisis of this magnitude is bound to impact our mood. Bouts of stress, anxiety, low mood, disturbed sleep, impact the gut directly and might result in poor digestion, acidity, or loss of appetite. Contrary to that the need of security and strong emotions might also trigger food cravings. In both scenarios, diet management becomes of utmost essential.

Macro and Micro — the basic diet

The immunity-boosting diet emphasises the liberal intake of all kinds of fruits, especially citrus ones like Indian gooseberry orange, grapefruit, guava, lemons. Since it is the summer season, a liberal intake of watermelons keeps you hydrated. Green leafy vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts, fish, dairy foods, and poultry, and very

limited intake of red and processed meat, refined carbohydrates, and sugar should be the key. The nuts and oilseeds already consist of natural fats. Added fats should be minimal, primarily liquid oils such as olive, canola, or soybean oil. Such a diet will provide appropriate amounts of healthy macronutrients and essential minerals and vitamins. Adequate amounts of minerals and vitamins provided by a healthy diet help

to ensure sufficient numbers of immune cells and antibodies, which are important as the body mounts a response to infections.

Indian diets are rich in certain spices that act as immunity boosters. Turmeric and black pepper have Cucurmin And Piperine that have anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants that work wonders for the immune system.

Pay attention to your mood and body

Do you feel stressed? Try out a calming activity first instead of eating, like listening to music, taking a stroll. Stress might lead to binge eating or erratic eating patterns.

Are you craving? Maybe you are actually dehydrated. Hydrate yourself with plain water, tender coconut water, lemon and honey water, and herbal teas throughout the day.

Eat local and seasonal

Eat whatever your area, the city can provide. It is better to eat a freshly cooked vegetable

khichdi or dahlia than having a canned and frozen meal. Processed and preserved foods are very high in salt and additives which aren’t healthy for the body’s electrolyte balance. Light home-cooked meals are the best to sustain your needs throughout the day.

Snacks to break the mundane

If you are looking for some healthy alternatives to munch through the day while working from home try these:

• Apple and cucumber salad

• Sprouts

• Tofu

• Veggies and hummus

• Yoghurt with fruits

• Dry fruits

• Guacamole (Avocado dip)

• Roasted millets

• Roasted groundnuts, Bengal gram

• Vegetable soups

• Boiled chickpeas

• Boiled eggs

• Oatmeal gruel

Consuming supplements in addition to a quality diet is not required unless you are low on micronutrient intake. Since it’s been more than a year of indoor stay, Vit D along with Zinc and Vit C might be added as supplements to the diet to boost immunity.

Disclaimer: Kindly note that the above blog has been submitted by members in their individual capacity.

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