" There isn't yet a vaccine or drug that can fully prevent coronavirus infection. We have to rely on our own immune system to recover from Covid-19."
Due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, almost every country has imposed a certain degree of restrictions on gathering in groups. Social distancing and staying at home can be challenging for many of us. With less physical and social activities, we need to make sure that we stay physically and mentally healthy.
Having a strong immune system is crucially important during the current coronavirus pandemic. There isn't yet a vaccine or drug that can fully prevent coronavirus infection. If we catch Covid-19, we still have to rely on our own immune system to recover from the disease. Coronavirus can be extremely dangerous for people with a weak immune system, particularly elderly people and people with diabetes, hypertension, cancer, heart and lung disease.
To boost immune system and improve our mood during the covid-19 pandemic, you can eat these following foods regularly:
1. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are rich in zinc, the essential mineral that plays a role in immune function. Zinc deficiency can lead to an increased anxiety level or even depression. The recommended daily intake of zinc is 11mg for men, 8mg for women, 11mg for pregnant women and 12mg for breastfeeding women.
30g of pumpkin seeds contain around 2.2mg of zinc. I usually add pumpkin seeds to my fruit salad for breakfast. Other foods that are high in zinc include oysters (cooked, 25mg per 30g), hulled hemp seeds (3mg per 30g), beef (cooked, 2.3mg per 30g), cashew nuts (1.8mg per 30g) and chia seeds (1.4mg per 30g).
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2. Guava (Raw)
Guava is one of the richest sources of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps boost immune system by supporting cellular functions. It may also help lower the anxiety level. Guava contains 228.3mg of ascorbic acid per 100g. Ascorbic acid is the most potent form of vitamin C. The recommended daily intake of vitamin C is 90mg for men, 70mg for women, 85mg for pregnant women and 120mg for breastfeeding women.
Guava is also rich in lycopene (5,204µg per 100g), vitamin A (624 IU per 100g) and beta carotene (374µg per 100g). Like vitamin C; lycopene, vitamin A and beta carotene are good for our immune system. The other fruits and vegetables that are rich in vitamin C include bell peppers (raw), kale (raw), kiwi, orange, cantaloupe melon, mango and papaya.
3. Fatty Fish
Fatty fish like salmon, herring, sardines and tuna are the great sources of vitamin D and omega 3 essential fatty acids. Smoked salmon contains 17.1µg of vitamin D per 100g. Both vitamin D and omega 3 essential fatty acids help strengthen immune system and reduce anxiety. Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with an increased autoimmunity and susceptibility to infection including infection by cold and flu viruses.
Your body can produce vitamin D when you expose your skin to the sun. Spending time outdoor during the day will help strengthen immune system and improve our mood.
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Since the beginning of this coronavirus outbreak, I have been eating raw garlic everyday to boost immune system. Every morning, I chop 2 to 3 cloves of garlic into tiny pieces and mix them with foods. Be well informed that cooking will destroy Allicin, the main therapeutic component of garlic.
Garlic can help reduce acute stress, anxiety and depression. Although eating garlic can not prevent coronavirus infection, it may help us recover from Covid-19 faster. Numerous studies showed that garlic helps reduce high blood pressure, insulin resistance and bad cholesterol levels while also boosts immune system. The death rate from Covid-19 is significantly higher among people with diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease as per table below:
Chronic respiratory disease
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Ginger is very good for those who suffer from respiratory disease. As Covid-19 is a respiratory disease, eating ginger may be good for those who are infected by the coronavirus. Ginger is known for its anti-inflammatory effects, hence, it helps strengthen immune system. A study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology showed that fresh ginger has antiviral properties against human respiratory syncytial virus. Please note that this study also suggest that ginger needs to be taken fresh (raw) in order to ease respiratory problems.
Turmeric contains curcumin, an orange substance with therapeutic benefits. Curcumin helps boost immune system and reduce inflammation in the body. According to a study published in the Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology & Physiology, curcumin reduces the severity of pneumonia caused by flu virus. The antiviral properties of curcumin is effective against Influenza A virus. Eating turmeric everyday may help reduce the severity of Covid-19 pneumonia. Studies also showed that turmeric helps ease anxiety, stress and depression.
Turmeric is not only good for our physical and mental health, it is also good for our skin. It is one of the key ingredients of Antioxidant Youthful Essence. This multi-award-winning anti-pollution booster helps protect our skin from free radicals and pollution. It also contains niacinamide (vitamin B3), allantoin, blue chamomile and ginkgo extracts to soothe, hydrate and revive tired-looking skin.
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Henry Tianus is a multi-award-winning Anti-Ageing Scientist based in London, UK. Henry Tianus has been listed as The Recognised Institute Practitioner at The Institute of Traditional Herbal Medicine and Aromatherapy (ITHMA), London (UK) since 2005. Henry Tianus's articles have been read by people in more than 100 countries with USA and UK at the top of the list. Join Henry Tianus eNewsletter to receive the latest health and wellbeing tips.
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