Foods That Increase Defenses

Besides being very beneficial to regulate our intestinal transit, whole grains and nuts provide us with minerals and vitamins to optimize the immune system

Cold, sore throat and flu season has just begun in the Northern Hemisphere. Did you know that your type of diet can increase or decrease the times you get sick? In this article we will tell you what are the foods that increase defenses.

It should be noted that the state of your immune system not only depends on this factor, but it does influence a great deal. Therefore, we want you to know some foods that can be useful to strengthen your defenses and enjoy better health. Pay attention!

Foods that increase defenses

Diet has a more than direct relationship with our health. If we eat well, we feel good. As simple as that. Therefore, if you are one of those people who is just beginning winter sick, then perhaps it is because you have a vitamin deficiency or you do not eat correctly.

Here are some products for you to incorporate into your diet if you want to reverse this situation. Pay attention to these foods that increase the defenses.

Garlic and onion

We could say that one does not live without the other at least in terms of culinary combinations. However, they are also a great partner to improve our immune system. This is because they are both perfect antiseptics, antibacterials, and antivirals.

Thus, they cannot be missing from your daily diet if you do not want to get sick. If you have the flu or a stuffy nose, a good cup of onion or garlic soup may be all you need to feel comforted.

Onion and garlic are foods that increase defenses


Used since ancient times to relieve coughs and throat irritation, honey is a true bactericide and antiseptic. Therefore, it is considered one of the foods that increase defenses. Have a little bit every day with dessert and your body will thank you.


Due to the beneficial bacteria that it provides us (for example,  Streptococcus thermophylus or Lactobacillus bulgaricus ), yogurt is a great probiotic capable of improving intestinal health and increasing defenses. Therefore, it helps us prevent colds and flu.

Mushrooms and mushrooms

A rich dish with mushrooms gives us a large dose of cytokines and polysaccharides. The former are cells that fight some respiratory infections, while the latter are compounds that improve the immune system.


This citrus fruit is something “misunderstood” due to the acids it contributes to the body. In fact, it is often demonized by believing that it irritates the stomach or increases heartburn. However, it acts as a powerful natural remedy against viruses and bacteria by providing us with vitamin C, iron and calcium.

Of course, among the recommended citrus fruits we also find oranges, grapefruits and papayas. All orange foods reduce cold symptoms. Do not forget!


Since it helps us raise our body temperature, it is a great way to shake off the cold when we get home. Therefore, it is also recommended if we get wet with rain or snow (especially when we stay in wet clothes for many hours).

Ginger has many properties, among which are: reduce joint pain, relax the body and lower fever. For all this, ginger is considered one of the foods that increase defenses.


Actually we must put together a group that contains all the red foods that we know, both vegetables and fruits. This is because the pigment that gives them that color stimulates our immune system. Therefore, in addition to tomatoes, do not hesitate to consume:

  • Beets
  • Strawberries.
  • Peppers.
  • Cherries
  • Gooseberries
  • Radishes

Don’t leave out dark-hued fruits like blueberries and plums either, as they also have carotenes and vitamin A. Two great barriers to germs!


They have a good dose of minerals, like zinc, that improve the functioning of the immune system. In turn, they provide nine essential amino acids that take you away from the doctor and drugs. The best legumes to eat are lentils, beans, peas, and chickpeas.

Whole grains

The three minerals that strengthen the defenses are copper, manganese and zinc. You have the latter “covered” if you eat legumes, but to add the remaining two we recommend that you consume whole grains and nuts.

A handful of almonds or raisins a day, as well as brown rice or preparations with rye flour, can be very beneficial during the winter to avoid getting sick and enjoy “iron health”.


Another great source of minerals as well as essential amino acids. Many things are said against eating eggs, for example that they increase cholesterol. However, the intake of a boiled egg a day greatly improves the immune system. As long as you don’t eat it fried with oil, it is allowed.


Although it should be included among the foods that provide beta-carotene, pumpkin or squash deserves a special section. And is that when we eat this rich food we add a lot of vitamin A to the body, which generates white blood cells that fight infections.

In fact, both the pulp and the seeds of this vegetable are more effective than any vaccine or medicine against the flu.


“Blue” fish are a great source of vitamin D,  necessary in the body to kill viruses and malignant bacteria. For this reason, we recommend eating salmon, hake and tuna when you feel down or about to get sick. Other recommended seafood are shellfish, since they provide us with a lot of zinc.

And so far our list of foods that increase defenses. Surely you already consume many of them regularly, but you can always add some more to your diet to complement the boost to your immune system. 

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