It’s that time of the year when we need to keep our immune systems in tip-top condition.
With the flu season here and this nasty bug going around, it’s time to take matters into our own hands and increase our vitamin intake.
Supplements can be a great choice, especially if you have any dietary restrictions like being vegan, vegetarian, or gluten intolerant.
But why not go straight to the source and get the goods from your foods instead?
Here are some foods that will give your immune system a much-needed boost by increasing your vitamin intake this winter.
Vitamin C is the big one for winter. According to the National Institutes of Health (NHI), humans don’t synthesize Vitamin C, which means that we need to include it in our diets.
The vitamin C content in food could potentially be reduced if it is stored for an extended time. Cooking vitamin C-rich foods has the same effect as the ascorbic acid is water soluble, essentially and it is destroyed by the use of heat.
For this reason, steaming or microwaving foods high in vitamin C may help to reduce nutritional losses.
Which foods are high in vitamin C?
We all know that citrus fruits, such as lemons, grapefruits and oranges are high in vitamin C.
In addition, red and green peppers, kiwis, broccoli, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, spinach, green peas, tomatoes, tomato juice and potatoes are great sources of vitamin C too.
Vitamin D helps the body fight off bacteria and viruses.
Vitamin D2 and D3 are naturally occurring and produced in the sun’s ultraviolet-B (UVB) rays, hence why it is important to take a supplement or increase your intake of foods containing vitamin D during winter when the sun’s not present.
People with darker skin also tend to lack vitamin D as the melanin in their skin act as a shade, making it harder for the sun’s ultraviolet-B (UVB) rays to penetrate the skin.
Here are the foods rich in Vitamin D:
- Cod liver oil
- Tuna fish
- Orange juice fortified with vitamin D
- Dairy and plant milk fortified with vitamin D
- Beef liver
- Egg yolk
- Cereals fortified with vitamin D
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