Could you possibly do something to intervene in this process and help strengthen your immune system? Let's find out the types of food, supplements, and lifestyle changes that could boost the immune system.



Is it possible to boost your immune system? This question has probably been asked more times nowadays than ever before, especially with the ongoing COVID 19 situation.

In its entirety, the immune system already does an excellent job in defending the body against harmful microorganisms. The system has adapted to protect its host from a wide range of pathogenic microbes that can pass through mucosal surfaces.

Yet the immune system can still fail to do its job, such as when germs enter the body successfully resulting in a person getting sick.

Could you possibly do something to intervene in this process and help strengthen your immune system? Would changing the food you eat and making lifestyle adjustments help? Perhaps taking specific supplements may be of value.

The thought of boosting your immune system can be very enticing, yet doing so has proven to be very elusive. The immune system is not a single entity. It is a system that requires all of its components to work harmoniously to function well.

Researchers are continuously studying the intricacies of the immune response. Studies have shown that eating a balanced diet and physical activity may potentially benefit a healthy immune system.



A 2019 study by Frontiers in Immunology mentioned that consuming certain nutrients above a recommended level may improve immune functions.

For those looking to prevent the flu, colds, and other viral infections, these foods may be useful in enhancing the immune system.


Citrus Fruits

Vitamin C is one of the most popular minerals that many people take whenever they have the common cold. The reason for this is because vitamin C can help increase immune functions.

Blood Orange, Fruit, Citrus Fruits, Oranges

Researchers in a 2017 study stated that this vitamin contributes to improving immune defense. It does this by supporting a range of cellular functions of the immune system.

Scientists believe that white blood cell production is enhanced by vitamin C intake. White blood cells are crucial in fighting off germs and infections.

Nearly all types of citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C. Some of the most common citrus fruits are oranges, lemons, tangerines, grapefruit, and limes.

With a wide variety to choose from and the ease with which to obtain these fruits, adding vitamin C can be very easy to include in any meal.

Since the body does not store nor produce vitamin C, this mineral needs to be taken on a daily basis. For men, 90mg of Vitamin C is recommended per day, while women have to take at least 75mg.



Broccoli is a vegetable that contains vitamins A, C, and E, including fiber and antioxidants. It is a very healthy vegetable that people can include in their diet.

Broccoli, Vegetable, Food, Healthy, Brocoli, Ingredient

To keep broccoli’s nutrients intact, it is best to cook it as little as possible. One study found that steaming is the best way to retain most of the vitamins, antioxidants, and nutrition in broccoli.


Red Bell Peppers

Citrus fruits are not the only food that is rich in vitamin C. In terms of vitamin C content, red bell peppers have been found to have three times as much of the vitamin compared to an orange. Red bell peppers are also high in beta carotene.

Pepper, Bell Pepper, Vegetables, Food, Cooking, RedBesides potentially improving the immune system, vitamin C could also make the skin healthy. The body converts beta carotene into vitamin A, which benefits the skin and eyes.



Making lifestyle changes is another way that may help the body fight off illnesses. Here are several tips to enhance immunity naturally.


Get Enough Rest

There is a close relation between sleeping and immunity. Scientists learned that a person consistently getting poor quality sleep has a higher chance of getting sick.

One study on healthy adults revealed that subjects who had less than 6 hours of sleep each night were more likely to have respiratory infections than those who slept more.

Baby, Girl, Sleep, Child, Toddler, Portrait, Sweet

Getting sufficient sleep may also improve one’s natural immunity. A study has shown that sleeping can help the immune system fight off illnesses.

For adults, aiming for 7 or more hours of sleep every night is important. Teenagers need at least 8 to 10 hours while young children should have up to 14 hours.


Consume More Whole Plant Foods

Whole plant foods, such as fruits and vegetables along with seeds and nuts can provide the body with antioxidants and nutrients to fight harmful pathogens.

Antioxidants specifically help in reducing inflammation by fighting off unstable compounds known as free radicals. The buildup of these free radicals in the body can lead to inflammation. Inflammation is often associated with many health conditions, including heart disease and Alzheimer’s.

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Eating more whole plant foods means consuming more fiber that can benefit the gut. A healthy gastrointestinal tract may improve immunity and help prevent harmful pathogens from invading the body through it.


Reduce Sugar Intake

Several research studies in 2017 have suggested that excessive consumption of sugars may contribute to being overweight and obese. Obesity could also increase one’s risk of getting sick.

Sugar, Spoon, Cutlery, Sweeteners, Sweet

According to one study, obese individuals who were given the flu vaccine had a higher likelihood of acquiring the flu compared to those who are non-obese and have received the vaccine.

Reducing sugar intake can decrease inflammation and help in weight loss. Lowering these two can help a person minimise the risk of having chronic health conditions such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Since heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes can weaken the immune system, reducing added sugars may be vital in helping boost immunity.

Try to limit sugar intake to less than 5% of daily calories. This amount is equivalent to around 2 tablespoons or 25 grams of sugar for a person who regularly consumes 2,000 calories per day.


Exercise Regularly

Although continuously intense exercises can suppress the immune system, exercising moderately can improve it.

Studies have shown that doing a single moderate exercise session can help boost a person’s vaccine response. People with compromised immune systems can benefit from it.

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Additionally, performing moderate exercises regularly could lower inflammation and boost immune cell regeneration.

Some examples of moderate exercises include jogging, steady bicycling, brisk walking, light hiking, and swimming. Try to aim for at least 150 minutes of performing moderate exercises a week for the workout to be effective.


Stay Hydrated

Although hydration does not stop viruses and germs from invading the body, preventing dehydration is essential to one’s overall health.

Dehydration can lead to headaches and hinder overall body function. These problems make a person more susceptible to illnesses if left unattended.

People can prevent dehydration by drinking enough liquids each day. Aim for urine that is pale yellow in colour. Health experts highly recommend drinking water because it is free of sugar, additives, and calories.

Although juice and tea can also be used for hydration, it is best to limit the intake of sweetened teas and juices since these can have high sugar content.


Consume More Healthy Fats

Healthy fats, such as those found on fish and olive oil, could be taken to strengthen your immune system against pathogens. Although low levels of inflammation are normal for stress and injury, chronic inflammation can lower the immune system’s functionality.

Olive Oil, Salad Dressing, Cooking

Olive oil is anti-inflammatory and has been closely linked to reducing the risk of chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Furthermore, its anti-inflammatory effects could help the body fight off infection from viruses and bacteria.

Omega-3 fatty acids found in chia seeds and fish reduce inflammation as well.



Although no vitamin has been proven to cure any disease, there is growing evidence suggesting that some supplements may help support a person’s overall well-being.

Below are some suggestions that can help the body fight off a range of illnesses.


Vitamin D

Vitamin D has had a reputation as a nutrient for boosting the immune system. Once primarily known for its benefits on bone health, many studies have now shown that this vitamin can also enhance immune responses.

Stimulating antimicrobial peptide production is one of the most significant ways vitamin D can help with immunity. Antimicrobial peptides are antibiotics that come from an organism.

Generated by immune cells, peptides display a variety of anti-viral and anti-microbial activities. Evidence of its beneficial activities is shown in a clinical trial that found vitamin D supplementation to reduce influenza among school children.



Research on probiotics has shown that these live microorganisms can benefit the immune system. One 2011 study stated that a major mechanism of probiotic action is by regulating immune response. Scientists found that these beneficial bacteria can promote immune health by activating various immune triggers.

One way probiotics can enhance immunity is by reducing pathogenic bacteria growth. There are several ways in which probiotics are able to do this. They can compete with these pathogens for nutrients and produce substances that hinder their growth.

Probiotics have also shown that they can promote immune healthy by improving barrier function and supporting epithelial cell production.

Out of all mechanisms by which probiotics help improve immune health, immune cell activity stimulation is the most significant. Particularly, supplementing oneself with various strains and species of probiotics have been shown to:

  • Help stimulate intestinal epithelial cell protection
  • Improve immunity by encouraging natural killer (NK) cell activity in the spleen
  • Enhance the integrity of the intestinal barrier by way of gene expression
  • Induce immunity-enhancing protein production in connective tissues
  • Change gut composition toward beneficial bacteria



When exposed to a new type of virus, the innate immune system’s function can be particularly crucial. The innate immune system provides a quicker yet less precise kind of immune response.

The reason for this is simple: viral strains continuously mutate, which allows them to avoid pre-established immune responses. In other words, exposed individuals have a very slim chance of building up the necessary antibodies to combat new viruses. This is where melatonin could come in.

Melatonin is a hormone that is known to facilitate sleep. Apart from that, it is also known as a powerful antioxidant. Its antioxidative effects are known to regulate the primary cellular elements of the innate immune system.

One study found that melatonin injections led to notable increases in the number of macrophage cells. Macrophage cells are white blood cells that seek and destroy bacteria, including other harmful organisms.

Adding to the fact that melatonin helps with sleep onset further denotes its value as an immune-boosting factor. As mentioned earlier, getting sufficient rest is one of the best ways to promote immune health, while a lack of sleep results in the opposite.

While sleeping, a healthy immune system releases molecules that combat infections and inflammations. On the other hand, sleep deprivation can lead to lower production of these molecules and antibodies necessary for immunity.



Curcumin is another chemical that provides beneficial effects on the inflammatory response of the body. It is an extract derived from turmeric and is known as a powerful antioxidant. One specific study in 2020 mentioned that curcumin is beneficial to cardiovascular health and also to the immune system.

Turmeric, Curcumin, Food, Spice, Pile, White, Golden

Although it is not known for its immune-enhancing properties, there is growing evidence that curcumin can promote and modulate the growth of immune cells. For instance, it has been found to:

  • Improve antibody response
  • Encourage immune responses of lymphocytes
  • Heighten B cell proliferation in the digestive tract
  • Lower inflammatory cytokine expressions



Although strategies related to lifestyle changes and nutrition to improve one’s immunity are not foolproof, the studies mentioned here suggest that people can do something to optimise their immune function.
Following a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and reducing stress are just some of the ways you can do to help your body’s immunity.

You can also take supplements that could boost immune function. Optimal Immune by Focus Performance is made with a blend of medicinal plants and mushrooms. It contains phytosterols, polysaccharides, terpenoids, superoxide dismutase, betulinic acid, and more that could help in reducing inflammation.

Furthermore, the compounds in Optimal Immune have been shown to promote NK cell growth and antioxidant levels while lowering blood sugar levels.

Supplements such as this, together with lifestyle changes and a proper diet (fruits and vegetables), could prove to be an effective strategy in optimising immune health.

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Optimal Immune can contribute towards increased immune function, increased cognitive function, improved gut health, reduced stress and hormone modulation.

6 Ways to Boost Your Immune System Naturally

It is the job of the immune system to defend the body against disease and illness. For it to operate optimally, each component in the immune system has to perform according to its function. The best way to make sure this happens is to boost your immune system by following natural methods.

The immune system is made up of cells, organs, proteins, and tissues. Together, all of these parts perform bodily functions that ward off bacteria, viruses, and foreign bodies responsible for diseases. Adding specific types of food to your diet could help enhance your immune system.

People who have a well-balanced diet tend to have stronger immune systems. A strong immune system minimises the risk of diseases. Like you’ve always heard, eating a variety of unprocessed and fresh foods daily can give you the minerals, vitamins, protein, fibre, and antioxidants required by the body.

Inonotus obliquus, commonly called Chaga, is a type of mushroom that primarily grows on birch trees found in Canada, Europe, Asia, and the United States. This mushroom has been used since ancient times in folk medicine, as it is believed to provide numerous health benefits.

One of the most popular mushrooms consumed by people worldwide are shiitake mushrooms. These mushrooms are valued for their savoury taste and numerous health benefits.

In Japanese, the word “maitake” means dancing mushroom. It is said to have gotten its name when people used to dance with happiness whenever they would find it in the wild. This is how popular the mushroom is in terms of its supposed healing properties.

Oyster mushrooms are among the most common types of mushrooms that are cultivated worldwide. This fungi grows near and on trees (such as beech trees) naturally and is often found in subtropic and temperate forests around the world. However, they are also grown in many countries for commercial purposes.

Many people believe that astragalus can prolong life as it is used in treating a wide range of ailments such as allergies, fatigue, and the common cold. Let’s take a look at astragalus and understand what this herb has to offer.