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Essential Nutrients for a Strong Immune System and Where to Find Them in Foods

Credits to silviarita/Pixabay

We live in a battleground we do not see. Constantly exposed to a war, which could render us either healthy or sick, we are always in the middle ground between good and bad. However, this is not meant in the context of morality that pits holy against evil; rather, between tiny creatures called pathogens and our bodies resisting their malignant presence.

Unknown to many, we are regularly in conflict with our environment against critters that are so tiny that it takes an intricate glass to magnify and identify their existence. Otherwise, they are invisible to our unaided eyes. Nevertheless, these small beings are not always external to our bodies. They exist within our bodies, too. Yet are naturally mitigated to not cause any serious illness, thanks to the body’s primary layer of defense, which is the immune system.

 

However, while useful, our immune system is not always strong. At times, it may falter in its duty to protect the body from disease and is the reason why we fall ill. This defense can be bolstered by eating the right food. Especially, the kind that contains the following nutrients:

Antioxidants

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If you have not heard of the term antioxidants, then chances are you also probably have not picked up the term detox. You see, the antioxidants’ primary role in our bodies is indeed to do just that—to cleanse it from unwanted chemical agents that cause it to either age fast or be inflicted with an illness. This form of nutrient is so potent in what it does that eating antioxidants-rich foods in general, such as fruits and vegetables, make not only youthful individuals, but also sick-free people, too. 

Zinc

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Zinc – well known to science. Its relative implication to the immune system partly as an antioxidant. Many scientists describe the role of zinc to the immune system as one primarily rooted in its power to modulate the immunity cells. Furthermore, the zinc’s pivotal role in the body’s immunity was also found out in its apparent lack that saw people who are deficient in zinc appear to be sickly. Inversely, a healthy supplementation of this valuable mineral caused the ill to recover faster than their peers who did not receive the same. Coincidentally, people who consume meat, eggs, and dairy, among other sources, maintain a sufficient amount of zinc in their bodies.

Vitamins B9 and B12

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Known also as Folate and Cobalamin respectively, both vitamins B9 and B12 play critical roles in the healthy development of cells at either or both the RNA and DNA level. Of the two, Cobalamin acts a more heightened role in the context of the immune system for its direct role of producing white blood cells. Vitamin B9 is mostly found in most plant-based foods, such as whole grains, citrus fruits, beans, and green-leafy vegetables. Meanwhile, vitamin B12 is largely found in animal meat and vitamin-enriched foods.

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