In these moments where planetary health is in crisis, in addition to all the basic hygiene measures necessary to avoid contagion, it is more convenient than ever to learn to strengthen our immune system in order to protect ourselves from the pandemic that we are experiencing as humanity.
Because in the face of a pandemic, or any disease, the most affected people are those who have the lowest defenses. Whether we like it or not, this is a basic law of nature that requires us to take care of ourselves in order to live.
Fortunately, there are many ways to keep our defenses high and in good health. Perhaps one of the fastest and safest ways to achieve this goal is to eat foods rich in nutrients that strengthen our defense system, what we could call "immunonutrition natural".
«Let your food be your medicine and your medicine your food»
This maxim of Hippocrates de Cos (considered the father of medicine) shows us the intimate relationship that our health has with what we eat.
There are some foods that we find in nature that we should know because they contain natural nutraceuticals that strengthen our health by stimulating the defense system, such as:
1. Vitamin C
2. Vitamin E
3. Vitamin B6
8. Prebiotics and Probiotics
Nutraceuticals are foods (or parts of them) that have the proven ability to provide health benefits, such as disease prevention and / or treatment. The term nutraceutical comes from "nutri" for nutrient and "céutico" for pharmacist, that is, foods that nourish and protect our health.
The immunostimulatory properties of these nutraceuticals is a powerful tool to control infectious and contagious diseases since these compounds modulate the immune system in a non-specific way. Boosting immunity is also of utmost importance for defense against cancer and other diseases.
Our diet, to be truly healthy, must be rich in essential nutrients and immunostimulatory, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory components that we can find in the plant kingdom.
Legumes, seeds, nuts, fruits, extra virgin oils and crucifers offer us a good supply of essential nutrients, proteins, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, Omega 3 and polyphenols.
So, I recommend including the following immunostimulatory foods in your diet to start benefiting from their properties (preferably consume them raw and, if possible, organic):
legumes in general such as beans, chickpeas, lentils and the list continue...
There are also some medicinal plants with immunostimulatory properties that you can consult with a herbal medicine specialist:
Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea)
Llanten (Plantago major)
Ginseng (Panax ginseng)
Guanabana (Curcuma longa)
Astragalus (Astragalus membraneceus)
Claw cat (Uncaria tomentosa)
Thyme (Thymus vulgaris)
Marcela (Achyroclyne satureoides)
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
As we can see, plants continue to be our opportunity to find solutions to current public health problems.
Most of these plants are readily available and have immunostimulatory and antiviral properties. These medicines from nature have been used since ancient times to cure diseases and today their effectiveness is scientifically proven.
In our history as humanity we have survived a significant number of pandemics, generally zoonoses, which have come with the domestication of animals, such as smallpox, diphtheria, influenza and tuberculosis.
A pandemic, like any health problem, is showing us an imbalance, something that we have to improve. Therefore it is a real opportunity for learning and change if it is approached with maturity and self-responsibility.
We already know that the coronavirus is contagious, as are fear, panic and "germophobia". Let's choose wisely what we want to share. Let us spread what nourishes us and does us good, with empathy, optimism and love.
Pura Vida, with more health!
Dr. Esteban Andrejuk