In times like today when everyone is trying to protect themselves from the pandemic virus with gloves and facemasks, the next most effective measure we can take is to boost our immune system as much as possible, to give our bodies that extra bit of strength to stay healthy and fight off whatever nasties may come our way. Although this is particularly true currently, it is also true for every other day of the year, every year! We have put together a list of the most powerful (and delicious!) veg superfoods that are readily available in stores, some of which you may already have at home, that will give your immune system that extra boost as well as help fight off dangerous diseases like diabetes, clogged arteries, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and obesity.
Use it in sushi or as a standalone treat! Seaweed is the rare veggie that provides a healthy dose of omega-3 fatty acids. It’s also loaded with components that prevent sudden strokes or heart attacks, like magnesium, zinc, iron, potassium, and iodine. Be on the lookout for seaweed listed as “nori” on a menu and rock’n’(sushi) roll with this heart-healthy ingredient!
Newton knew what he was doing: figs are a rich source of heart healthy nutrition like calcium and fiber. Eating it raw, dried, or in a jam is more than a good preventative move, it can also reverse the effects of heart disease.
Now that Hawaii can share their avocados with the world, it should be easier to get ahold of this single seed berry. (Surprise! Didn’t think this would be one of the berries this article alluded to earlier, did you?!) Avocados have been hilariously blamed for shifting millennials’ spending power from home ownership to toast but what you can actually blame avocados for is being rich in potassium and monounsaturated fats. That helps you lower cholesterol and keeps your heart healthy. Maybe millennials are planning for their future by eating all that avocado toast.
Don’t confuse the cute bird with the cute fuzzy fruit! Inside one kiwi you’ll find a juicy green fruit that’s packed with vitamins B, C, & E; polyphenols, magnesium, potassium, and copper. (Inside the other, a tiny bird!) These edible elements from the periodic table reduce clots and keep your whole heart system healthy, helping your immune system stay strong.
As arguably one of the most tastiest members of the nut family, these gems not only help your immune system stay robust but studies show that almonds are also loaded with healthy nutrients that can help boost your memory, intelligence and reduce your risk of diabetes and heart disease. So eating a handful of almonds can help lower cholesterol and due to a high level of plant sterols, prevent the absorption of harmful LDL and slash the risk of cardiovascular disease.
One of the most versatile foods on our list, garlic provides the flavor, vampire repellant, and heart boost! More importantly though, garlic is also a warrior of the immune system, so much so that when a sailor got sick on board a ship, the other crew members would all take raw garlic to keep their immunity up and avoid sickness. Not only that, but garlic also reduces enzymes that negatively impact your blood vessels and tackles the plaque in your arteries.
– Vitamin A,K,C,B6
Beyond being the most joked about cabbage, kale brings the heart as well as the laughs. Whether you massage it before tossing it in a salad or mix it into a smoothie, kale is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and (you guessed it) more fiber! Kale leads the leafy greens as far as heart health goes, as it helps with maintain the cardiovascular system and helps prevent heart disease. Naturally, it’s low in fat and calories as well, which rounds out this near perfect leaf quite well.
– Vitamins D, C and E
This soccer mom staple is more than an energy boost for pre-teens at halftime! On top of quenching your thirst, you’ll gain some serious nutrients that will assist your immune system: vitamin C, potassium, and pectin (which is fiber). Turns out, potassium isn’t just in bananas; it also helps lower blood pressure, moderate sodium intake, and neutralize proteins that contribute to heart scar tissue or heart failure. Pectin plays an important role too and helps absorb the cholesterol in foods.
For those among us who like hummus, here’s another reason to put your pita in this popular dip! Chickpeas bring a lot to the table: potassium, vitamin B6, fiber, and vitamin C, which all help to lower cholesterol and drop your risk of heart problems later on. Not bad for a food normally eaten after its been churned into a thick legume smoothie.
Horseradish root has been praised for its lengthy list of health benefits and the evidence-backed science behind the root suggests that it is a fantastic superfood for those hoping to strengthen their immune systems. The root contains beneficial anti-inflammatory properties and studies prove that the high nutrient content of horseradish is able to combat high cholesterol and even improve kidney functions to mention only a couple of exceptional health benefits.