Starting to feel a tickle in the back of your throat? Runny nose? Sinuses infection? Cold and flu season can be a doozy, but luckily you don’t have to feel powerless.
There are certain foods that you can eat and supplements you can take to enhance your immune system and combat the worst of this season’s germs. You have the power to support your body’s natural immune response with things you probably have in your kitchen right now to make an immune-boosting smoothie which is a delicious way to pack antioxidants-rich food into your daily routine!
Before we get to the smoothie recipe, let’s talk about our immune and lymphatic systems. The lymphatic system supports the immune system by doing a sort of “background check” on blood that is diverted. It also produces, distributes and maintains lymphocytes to protect against infectious agents. Our lymphatic organs consists our red bone marrow, thymus, spleen, appendix, tonsils and lymph nodes.
When our bodies trigger an immune response, we get an increase in our white blood cell (WBC) count. WBC’s are the largest cell type in blood. They are formed in bone marrow and their main role is protecting the body from damage and invaders. There are 5 types of WBC: neutrophils, eosinophils, basophils, monocytes and lymphocytes.
Lymphocytes are responsible for adaptive immunity. They need to encounter the threat first before attacking, and then they remember those invaders for next time. There are 3 functional classes of lymphocytes: B-cells, T-cells, and Natural Killer (NK) cells.
B cells make up 10-15% of circulating lymphocytes, T cells make up 80% and NK cells make up the remaining 5-10%. Each cell type has their own unique way of responding to pathogenic antigens and attacking foreign invaders.
In terms of food that best supports these two systems, fruits, vegetables and certain spices are the MVPs. Citrus fruits like lemons, oranges and grapefruit are full of vitamin C. Vitamin C is thought to increase the production of WBC and is key to fighting infections. Spices are also very important, as an example both turmeric and ginger may help decrease inflammation in the body and ginger also helps combat nausea. Combining these foods with your daily supplement formula is the best way to prevent the cold and flu this season.
If your vitamin formula contains fat soluble vitamins like A, D, E or K, it is best to take it with a meal that contains fat. Coconut milk contains medium-chain triglycerides, as well as a lipid called lauric acid, which has been shown to have antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Due to these properties, researchers believe that coconuts may also boost the immune system.
Currently, VitaminLab is offering free immune boosting Vitamin D and American Ginseng for your personalized supplement formula! Take advantage of this incredible deal and create a formula for yourself, or for your patient here! Want to add other ingredients to your formula that help boost immunity? Try vitamin C, zinc, garlic, mushrooms and probiotics!
Now let’s get to the recipe!
Immunity Boosting Smoothie Recipe
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 cup coconut milk
- ½ cup frozen mango
- ½ lemon, squeezed
- ½ valencia orange, squeezed
- 1 tbsp fresh grated ginger
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 serving of your VitaminLab formula
Blend all ingredients together in a high speed blender, and voilà! There you have it. Enjoy!