Did you know that the immune system is one of the human body's most sophisticated and complex physiological mechanisms? This unfortunately means that it can easily become off-balance when we get ill.
Many factors such as poor diet, lack of sleep, stress, and decreased mobility can contribute to weakening our immune system, especially during the cold months. This means that taking care of your immune system at this time of year is as important as ever. Following a healthy diet is one way to ensure this, but did you know plants have also been proven to have some incredible immune-boosting benefits whilst being cooped up indoors? Read below to find out how!
How to boost your immune system?
When it comes to improving immunity, foods rich in vitamin C are a popular choice. However, foods rich in other nutrients such as vitamin A, B6, B12 and D and minerals like copper, iron, selenium and zinc are also essential to strengthening the immune system.
The strength of superfoods:
Superfoods are foods that are significantly higher in nutrients than many alternatives and are possibly the most convenient, versatile and delicious ways to ensure you are getting a healthy, balanced diet filled with vital nutrients and minerals.
Superfoods like Spirulina, Chlorella, Mushroom, Turmeric, Chia Seeds and Acai Berries have unusually high levels of nutrients, making them ideal for increasing your vitamin and mineral intake while living a busy lifestyle. Being able to add any of these Superfoods into your breakfasts, smoothies, and baking is a simple way to boost your immune system.
Plants for the win!
Did you know Horticultural therapy has been around since 2000BC and was first recognised as a viable treatment for mental health conditions in the early 1800s?! It’s been well documented that patients recover significantly faster in hospital rooms that have houseplants or even a view of nature. This is because plants are good for the mind, body and soul.
There are 3 main ways plants help support the body against infection:
- They improve your respiratory health by filtering the air and increasing the moisture in it
- They speed up the body’s ability to recover
- They increase natural killer cells in the body so you can fight off infectious diseases more easily.
Improving your respiratory health with plants:
Plants help filter VOCs (volatile organic compounds) from the air during the process of photosynthesis. These nasty VOCs can be found in common household cleaning products, and aerosols, as well as cigarette smoke and exhaust fumes. Common side effects include asthma and repressed immunity in children as they negatively impact our respiratory system.
Plants are also great at improving air quality due to the wait in which they transpire. By adding moisture to the air and increasing humidity levels, they benefit anyone's lungs who are affected by dry indoor settings.
Plants help increase natural killer cells in the body:
Natural killer cells are white blood cells that play a pivotal role in our immune system fighting off viral infections. Scientific studies released in 2018 found that people who regularly immersed themselves in nature (versus those who didn’t) had a 20% higher level of natural killer cells in the body.
Leaf Envy X Naturya immune boosting recommendations:
Leaf Envy’s top 5 Immunity boosting plant recommendations are
Naturya’s top 5 Immunity boosting recipe recommendations are:
- Supergreen Smoothie Bowl
- Immune Boosting Granola
- Zingy Immunity Smoothie
- Cleansing Spirulina Soup
- Chlorella-Mashed Avocado
If you have any immune-boosting tips or tricks, send us an email! We would love to hear about them.