Coronavirus as an pandemic has already caused countries to lockdown for social distancing and prevention of its further spread. It is important to follow basic hygiene but there’s only so much that hand sanitisers can do. Hence, it’s imperative to boost immunity that helps prevent diseases like novel coronavirus.
Our body has a natural defence mechanism, “immunity”, to prevent and fight again virus such us coronavirus infection. Since it is a virus which has never mutated in human beings before, there is no current solution to it. Therefore, prevention is the best way during times of social distancing or self-quarantine. Some of the most helpful ammo in this fight against ill-health is right in your kitchen.
Turmeric is a spice commonly used in Indian cuisines and easily accessible. It contains a bright-yellow compound known as curcumin which has strong anti-inflammatory effects.
Garlic is a pungent herb with a characteristic aroma with zesty flavour and popular among ndian cuisine. It helps to fight the common cold and has antibacterial and antiviral effects.
Cloves also known as lavang pods are a major part of Ayurvedic medicine. It helps in treating nausea and flu. The oil in it combats sore gums.
Cinnamon has strong anti-inflammatory properties and can be added to warm water, coffee and desserts. The oil in it reduces aches, joint pains and improves circulation.
Omega-3 fatty acids can reduce inflammation in the body. The lining of the cells is protected by this fatty acid which keeps the immune system in check. It may not directly help with warding off a cold, but it bolsters the immune system.
Juices like kale which is nutrient-dense provides one of the best ways to fortify the immune system. Pomegranate helps in aiding blood clotting, boosts heart health and bone development. Beetroot juice has powerful antioxidants that lower risk of heart disease and inflammation. Orange juice is rich source of vitamin C along with calcium that contributes to bone health.
Here are quick recipes for daily consumption of food to boost your immunity system.
DAILY DETOX TEA – lemon, ginger and turmeric
6 cups water
1 chunk fresh ginger
3 cinnamon sticks
1 tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp cayenne pepper
6 fresh lemons
Peel the ginger and dice into thin slices. Add water in a large pot or saucepan over high heat and add the sliced ginger. Turn to low-heat once the water boils and let it simmer for approximately 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, add the cinnamon sticks, turmeric and cayenne and simmer on low heat for another 10 minutes; stirring occasionally.
Then remove from heat, let cool and strain.
This makes about six cups of a concentrated version of the detox tea which you can store in a glass jar in the fridge. This can be consumed warm or cold and add ½ fresh lemon juice right before you enjoy.
BREAKFAST SMOOTHIES WITH FLAXSEEDS
2 tbsp flaxseeds
1 cup flavoured soya milk
1 cup chilled and roughly chopped strawberries
½ cup chilled and roughly chopped bananas
2 tsp honey
Garnish: 2 strawberries and 2 bananas slices
Add strawberries, bananas, flaxseeds and honey in soya milk, blend in a juicer till the mixture is smooth and frothy.
Pour equal quantities of the smoothie into two individual glasses.
Serve garnished with a strawberry and banana slice.
There are healthy recipes to keep your unhygienic/junk food eating habits at bay. But the above food items are easily available in your kitchen spice box or at the market. Staying healthy especially during such conditions is imperative.
The writer is a sport nutritionist. To get an immune boosting diet or a list of supplements under a guided programme, email – [email protected]