6 immune-boosting foods that can be found in your pantry

6 immune-boosting foods that can be found in your pantry

  • November 1, 2020

By Nneka Jonas Time of article published 1h ago

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We go through uncertain temperatures and unpredictable weather conditions all the time.

If it takes time for our palate and wardrobe to adjust to these changes, so does our immunity.

Immunity is one of the body’s most important processes that help keep the disease under control, especially during the days when seasons are changing.

In order for us to keep commonly occurring diseases such as cold and flu away, it is important for us to eat foods that keep our immunity up.

The best thing about these immunity-boosting foods is that they are easily accessible within the premises of your kitchen.

Here are six immune-boosting foods you can easily find in your home.

1. Black pepper

Black pepper helps in boosting immunity naturally.

This spice is rich in Vitamin C which makes it antibacterial and also keeps toxins in control.

2. Garlic

Apart from garlic being good to keep cold and cough away, it also acts as an immunity supplement.

This flavourful food has compounds that help your immune system to fight germs.

3. Ginger

Ginger soothes your throat and relieves chest congestion.

It also gives your body the much-needed push that is needed for immunity all thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties.

4. Lemon

Citrus can do wonders when it comes to keeping cold away. It’s also essentially antifungal and antiseptic.

The high naturally occurring Vitamin C content in lemon makes it a must-have especially if you want to keep your immunity levels high.

5. Turmeric

Tumeric is known to have antifungal and antibacterial properties and it helps in building your body’s natural defence against disease-causing bacteria and viruses.

6. Honey

Honey contains hydrogen peroxide and pollen, which makes it antiseptic and relieves seasonal allergies.

World Vegan Day 2020: 5 immunity boosting foods that can help you lose weight

5 immunity boosting vegan foods that can help you lose weight

  • November 1, 2020

World Vegan Day 2020: November 1 is celebrated as World Vegan Day around the world to raise awareness about the positivities of the vegan lifestyle. It is celebrated in different ways like exhibitions, seminars, public events, etc. However, the idea is to spread awareness about this lifestyle that has benefitted many people around the world in terms of weight loss and immunity-boosting.

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, it is important to look after our immune system. There is no cure or vaccine available for the disease that has been taking lives around the world, but our best defence is our immune system. If you are someone who follows a vegan lifestyle, there are a number of vegan foods that are known to boost your immune system.

Check out 5 immunity-boosting foods that can help you lose weight:


Also called the orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, these are one of the best vegan foods to boost immunity. Rich in vitamin A, yams help build a healthy immune system. Also, it is rich in fibre which means it is great for your gut which is your body’s first line of defense against many pathogens that cause sickness.


Many may not like the smell associated with it, garlic is one of the best ways to keep pathogens at bay along with the vampires. Garlic has been used as a household ingredient to help prevent a cold or flu as it contains compounds that are loaded with sulfur which in turn, boosts the body’s white blood cells to fight off viruses.


Another yellowish-orange coloured veggie known to be amazing for the immune system. Pumpkin is a great source of carotenoids, including beta carotene that helps your body produce infection-fighting cells in our body hence boosting immunity.

Dark, leafy greens

Dark leafy veggies are known to be very healthy for your gut and your immune system. Right from broccoli and compact Brussels sprouts to spinach, choose your favourite. They are known as cruciferous veggies packed in calcium and zinc, perfect for boosting immunity.


Packed in vitamin C, oranges are a great immunity-boosting food. They are also available in the form of supplements. Vitamin C helps the body produce white blood cells that in turn helps fight pathogens.

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‘Food supplements can boost immunity against Covid-19

‘Food supplements can boost immunity against Covid-19

  • November 1, 2020

Forever Living Products Nigeria, the health and wellness products company turned 20 years recently. In celebration of the milestone opted for a virtual ceremony in view of the Covid-19 pandemic. , The Country Sales Manager, Mr. Daniel Ikechukwu in this interview with Ibrahim Apekhade Yusuf speaks on the successes and challenges of running a network marketing company thus far. Excerpts:


The 20th anniversary celebration of your company was dampened by the Covid-19 pandemic given the low-key ceremony you opted for. How have you coped as a business since the outbreak of Covid-19?

The pandemic and what the world is experiencing now, do actually have a down-turn on all the businesses globally. However, we are in the health and wellness industry, so, Covid-19, did not really impact negatively on our business, because the services we provide for people are food supplements and some of these food supplements were actually needed during the pandemic. Some of these products are immune boosters, so people were actually looking for them to boost their immune system. We also offer personal care products, the hand soap, hand sanitisers that people were looking for, all over the world, and these helped them to curb Covid-19. Though we regret what Covid-19 has done to the world generally, we sympathise with businesses, we sympathise with people who had lost their loved ones due to the pandemic. However, for us, as a business, Covid-19 actually helped people to know more about our products, because with Covid-19, we were able to reach out to many more people. It did not really affect our business.

You had hand sanitisers before the pandemic. People hoped you could have had other supplements that could check the disease?

We have a range of supplements that a lot of Nigerians presently use to boost their immune system. For us, they are not drugs. We don’t position them as drugs, they are food supplements that can help people and we have varieties of them. It all depends on what the people want. And one of them, the Ascobic Acid, was really helpful. The challenge we had was meeting up with the demand. Our products are known by people and those who came for these products and others who are coming for available ones actually benefited from these products. We did not really bring in anything new. What we just did was to boost our supply chain and try as much as possible to provide the products for Nigerians. We did not increase our prices, we did not change anything, because we saw it as something we could do to help to fight this global pandemic.

Is this why you decided to stream your products and celebrate your Success Day online?

The Success Day is an integral part of our business, It is the one singular event in a country that will help us showcase and celebrate our Forever Business Owners (FBOs) who had achieved either during the quarter or during the past months, who had achieved successes in this business. So, the Success Day is integral. The advent of Covid-19 made it difficult for people to meet physically, everybody in the world is aware of the fact, that people couldn’t meet physically. However, our Success Day demands that we meet physically and celebrate. But since this is an integral part of what we do in Forever, we had to look for a way of celebrating our people. We had to find a way to see our people motivated individually, not really coming together. And this we had on October 10, this year. This was our very first virtual Success Showcase. And I tell you, till now, we are still receiving commendations. Our people really appreciated this. Everything that we needed to do was done, the only thing was that people couldn’t meet physically. We used all our social media channels to broadcast it live, and our people really enjoyed it. They were motivated, they were celebrated and the core objective of our Success story, keeping our people celebrated, giving an impression to people who do not know Forever , was truly achieved. And the social media platforms provided a bigger reach for us, because once you are on FaceBook, Twitter, Whatsapp, it was there live. It was a very successful outing for us.

As a health and food supplement company, are you considering research and development of a coronavirus vaccine?

When we talk about vaccines, then we are talking about pharmaceutical companies. This relates to the pharmaceutical and medical industries. We are not in the race for the vaccines, because that is not our core competence. I strongly believe that the medical community and the medical world are doing their best, doing everything possible to give us a vaccine and what is key to everybody will be the potency of the vaccine when it comes out. And how we can use it to curb the virus. And until we get that, we still advise that people should use all the necessary measures: Wear your masks regularly, observe social distancing and use hand sanitizers. These are remedies that are presently available to us. These we can use to fight off the virus until vaccine comes out.

How are you preparing for the post-pandemic?

Yes, for us in Nigeria, the only concern that we have is what is happening at Tin-Can Island Ports, Apapa, where shipment is delayed for weeks, beyond what one could imagine. Aside this, all our plans are intact. We have not changed our plans on our business up-North. However, because of obvious reasons, all those areas are now red flags. You can’t travel to those areas. Not just because you don’t want to travel, not that you don’t want to develop territories, or develop the market, or our own teams in the North-Eastern part of the country, however, for obvious reasons, you can’t go, ether because of restrictions, or because, I wouldn’t want to say Boko Haram, but our mentality is always that even where there is a war, people must always eat, and people will always look for supplements. People will always look for personal care products and that is who we are and that is what we do. So, our responsibility is to make these products available. Rather, we have to make them available through a team. We cannot go as an office to say we want to do this. We have to ensure that we motivate one or two persons who are ready to build a team in those areas and we can now go with them. That is how our business is structured. We can’t change it. So, it is our responsibility to motivate, it’s our responsibility to galvanise and still take Forever products Nigeria to the apex. We still want to make a name globally. Our challenge is not with anybody here, our challenge is within the Forever family, we want to do the best. That has always been our focus. Again, all our leaders are still here. The managers now have new measures, new goals because without these things you can’t succeed.

3 Rules Every Woman Must Follow To Build Immunity

3 Rules Every Woman Must Follow To Build Immunity

  • November 1, 2020

Study shows three out of four Indian women are deficient in vitamins because they tend to put the health of families ahead of their own.

The National Nutrition Month in September made us aware that many issues regarding nutrition need to be addressed consciously. Women’s health and immunity are among the most daunting challenges. Recently, I came across a campaign, Project Streedhan, run by DSM India.Through a compelling digital film ‘Sehat ki Tijori’, the campaign urges women to stock their vault of health with nutritious foods by treating this as a lifetime investment.

While the film’s visuals were most evocative, the messaging was crisp and touching too, motivating one in putting pen to paper and writing about the issue of women’s immunity. The problem is more critical due to the global coronavirus pandemic. In such situations, it’s common knowledge that nutrition is the most essential element in building a person’s immune system.

Despite this, research indicates that three out of four Indian women are deficient in vitamins. This is partly because most women tend to put the health of families ahead of their own, completely overlooking the fact that a healthy mother denotes healthy children. The lack of personal attention is the root cause of women’s low immunity, leading to lower resistance against infections.

Therefore, it is time women take their health more seriously by ensuring proper nutrition, particularly in the case of nursing mothers. As a result, it is important to raise awareness about the role of nutrition vis-à-vis illness, especially among nutrient-deficient women and their families. Towards this objective, three basic principles should be followed.

The first is to ascertain there is an adequate intake of protein, which boosts immunity. Yet, women fail to ensure an adequate daily intake of protein. This is what builds antibodies in the system and helps fight viruses, bacteria or other pathogens.

But there is more to it than simply increasing protein intake. In many cases, women lack the digestive enzymes or acid required to break down protein. Consequently, apart from increasing protein intake, women need to make sure they have the right amount of stomach acid and digestive enzymes. For this, women should consult a nutritionist or their family physician to address the issue safely.

The second element is equally essential – consuming proper amounts of fats. Acting as fuel for immune cells,they form the cell membranes. Fats are also vital for female hormones, viz., progesterone, oestrogen and DHEA. Shortage of good fats in the body– in the form of oils from coconuts, almonds, walnuts and other dry fruits – can lead to compromised immunity. Coconut oil contains monolaurin that acts as an antimicrobial and lauric acid,which is an antioxidant supporting the immune system.

Thirdly, the intake of inflammatory foods needs to be reduced. These include processed foods or those containing sugar. Processed foods – such as maida, readymade packaged noodles, pasta, etc.– are devoid of nutrients.Although pleasant to the taste buds, these areinflammatory. Sugar is another major cause of inflammation in the body and is best avoided or minimized, especially during coronavirus times when robust immunity is indispensable.

All the above are markers of ample immunity. By following these principles, women can enjoy improved levels of energy and even sleep better. A night of quality sleep can enhance immunity by stimulating the release of cytokines (proteins) and activating the T cells, which fight against infection and destroy the virus or pathogen-infected cells.

Finally, one must not forget that having a strong immune system can be the best defence in avoiding any infection, more so because a vaccine against the coronavirus is still not available in the market. It is highly recommended that everyone, including women, pay maximum attention to their health by boosting immunity.In the case of mothers, this is the least they can do for themselves – and their children.

(Author is a Clinical Nutritionist, Lactation Consultant and Diabetes Educator in Chennai)