Top 21 Immunity Boosting Indian Foods to Fight COVID 19

Top 21 Immunity Boosting Indian Foods to Fight COVID 19

Immunity boosting foods during covid

Top 21 Immunity Boosting Indian Foods to Fight COVID 19

A quick search on immunity boosting foods for covid can be a hard task, but we have curated what’s best for you! Here is Mishry’s list of top 21 food and lifestyle practices that can help you improve your immunity.

What if we tell you that your ‘Yo-yo’ dieting plan is putting your essential nutrition cycle off the clock? In our battle against Covid 19, we’ve come across one word that has gathered maximum importance in our day-to-day life. Immunity!

Here we have curated a list of immunity boosting foods for Covid to help you maintain your health standards with regular kitchen ingredients, and small lifestyle tips that help you.

Top 21 immunity rich foods and practices to regain healthy diet habits, maintain nutritious fluid intake, build high energy levels, and to follow healthy practices can be of real help in the current times. So, let us engage ourselves in acquiring a healthy lifestyle by taking note of some beneficial activities!

1. Watermelon Juice

watermelon juice for covid
Watermelon Juice is a powerful antioxidant.

Watermelon has high water content, and is a powerful antioxidant. Its amino acids can help you to elevate your workout routine. It contains fiber that encourages a healthy digestive tract.

Recipe

Watermelon Juice can be prepared easily at our home following these few steps:

  • Step 1: Chop a bowl of watermelon.
  • Step 2: Drop the pieces in a processor.
  • Step 3: Add ½ a tbsp of grated ginger. 
  • Step 4: Blitz it until it turns into juice.
  • Step 5: Add a squeeze of lime as per your taste. Serve cold.

Preparation Time

5-10 minutes

Why Watermelon Juice?

Watermelon has high water content and also provides some fiber. These nutrients help promote a healthy gut by preventing constipation and promoting regularity of bowel movements.

Water 92%
Carbohydrates  2%
Dietary Fiber  1%
Vitamin A  11%
Vitamin C 11%

Best Time to Consume Watermelon Juice

Morning hours. 

2. Moringa Leaves

Moringa leaves for covid 19
Moringa can be used in various ways including sabzis, soups and chillas.

How can you add moringa to your diet? Here’s how.

Recipe

  • Step 1: Add chopped onions and Moringa leaves to 1 tbsp of oil.
  • Step 2: Saute and cook till leaves wilt and rawness goes away.
  • Step 3: Season with salt and saute again.
  • Step 4: This nutrition-sense mixture can be added to a chilla or uttapam batter. Add it to an aloo sabzi, paranthas and sandwich filings.

Preparation time:

20 minutes

Why would you prefer Moringa leaves?

It acts as an antibacterial agent and is anti-inflammatory. It remains a good source of Calcium, Iron and more.

Carbohydrates  12.5 gm
Fiber 0.9 gm
Vitamin B1 0.06 mg
Vitamin B2 0.05 mg

3. Kadha with Saffron

kadha with saffron
Kadha with saffron is warming and packed with multiple benefits.

Kadha is an Ayurvedic homemade drink prepared with raw herbs and spices. It is a hybrid or concoction of herbs carrying medicinal properties and contains healing potential. It is helpful in terms of boosting overall immunity. Here is a simple recipe of kadha made using multiple ingredients like saffron, cardamom and cinnamon. 

Recipe

Ingredients

  • Cinnamon stick – 1 inch
  • Green cardamom – 4 to 5
  • Cloves – 3 to 4
  • Nutmeg – a small pinch
  • Saffron strands – 6 to 7
  • Black peppercorns – 4 to 5
  • Ginger – ½ a inch
  • Water – 400 ml

Method

  • Step 1: Put the water on boil.
  • Step 2: Crush the ginger a bit and add to boiling water.
  • Step 3: Add the cloves, cardamom, nutmeg, black peppercorns and cinnamon stick.
  • Step 4: Keep boiling .
  • Step 5: Add the saffron strands and boil a bit more.
  • Step 6: The colour of the water will change to saffron yellow.
  • Step 7. Strain and consume.

Preparation time: 

8 to 10 minutes

4. Healthy benefits of Yoga

immunity-boosting yoga exercises
Yoga can help lower stress hormones.

The origin of the word “Yoga” lies in a sanskrit word, “Yuj”, which means “unite” or “to join”. It is said to be an ultimate path to realism, and connecting with your body, mind, soul on a spiritual level. 

How is Yoga beneficial?

  • Lowers stress hormones
  • Calms the nervous system
  • Good for heart health
  • Improves breathing
  • Better posture and flexibility

Few postures that can help boosting immunity:

  • Shishuasana (child pose)
  • Setu Bandhasana (bridge pose)
  • Bhujangasana (cobra pose)
  • Dhanurasana (bow pose)
  • Matsyasana (fish pose)

NOTE: It’s better to consult a doctor before performing any exercise regimes.

5. A delicious way to boost your nutrition: Smoothies

banana smoothies with oats
Boost your nutrition with a healthy smoothie.

A smoothie is a drink made from pureed raw fruit and/or vegetables, using a blender. The first smoothie-like beverages were made in the 1900’s. In 1935, Fred Osius created the well known Waring Blender. Smoothies were made only with fruits that were available during the season, because frozen food wasn’t available.

Here is a quick smoothie recipe that is made using soy milk, bananas, oats and peanut butter. Yum!

Recipe

Ingredients 

  • Plain Soya milk – 250 ml 
  • Rolled oats – 1 tsp
  • Peanut butter 2 tsp
  • Lemon juice of ½ a lime
  • Banana – 1, chopped
  • Chiku pulp from 2 chikus
  • Dry roasted, crushed peanuts

Method

  • Step 1:  Place everything in a blender except crushed peanuts.
  • Step 2:  Blend and serve topped with crushed peanuts.
  • Step 3: Adjust consistency with the help of soya milk.
  • Serve fresh!

Preparation time: 

5-10 minutes

6.  Role of Vitamin E

It works as a fat soluble antioxidant which is capable of hosting immune functions and fighting infections. It also works as a good source of skin wellness.

Easy ways to obtain Vitamin E:

Wheat germ oil –

  1. Is extracted from the germ of the wheat kernel.
  2. Potion for skin wellness.
  3. Good source of Vitamin E, Potassium, and Zinc.
  4. Fiber and healthy fats.

Mangoes – 

  1. Rich in carbohydrates
  2. High in fiber
  3. Also rich in Vitamin A and Vitamin C 
  4. Contains folate

Almonds – 

  1. Anti-oxidants
  2. Zero cholesterol 
  3. High in sugar
  4. Good for heart health
  5. Rich in Vitamin E

7. A few minutes in the sun can help elevate your mood naturally?

Sitting in the sun during Covid-19
Sitting in the sun helps increase serotonin in our brain.

Sitting in the sun increases your brain’s capacity to release a hormone called serotonin which helps boost mood and help you feel calm and composed. A dip in the level of serotonin can result in episodes of increased stress. 

When your skin is exposed to the sunlight, it makes Vitamin D from cholesterol, which is essential for healthy bones and for the body to absorb calcium and phosphate from the diet. Lack of Vitamin D can lead to bone deformities.

How long should we be in the sun?

The time frame remains different for different people. Depending on the skin type, color, texture and how much skin is exposed to the sun!

It is important to enjoy the sun safely when you are out and about. It is better to resort to tools like “The UV index” to know how strong the sun’s rays are and if there is a high risk of sunburn. When the UV Index is 3 or more, it is enough to cause damage for some skin types and therefore apply sunscreen and cover well.

8. A mineral for speedy recovery: Zinc

Referring to immunity boosters we majorly point out their vitamin and mineral content. Zinc being one of the most important mineral, provides us with:

  • Better immunity
  • Antioxidant properties
  • Needed for blood clotting

Zinc deficiency may lead to-

  1. High blood pressure
  2. Chronic diseases
  3. Delayed wound healing
  4. Weight loss

Meat, Legumes, Seeds, Nuts (peanuts), Dairy foods (cheese and milk), Eggs are a few foods that are rich in Zinc and can help you for speedy recovery and prevention of infections.

9. Coconut water and its nutritional value in our day to day life

Coconut water during covid 19
Coconut water helps you stay hydrated.

Coconut water is one of the most beneficial immunity boosting drinks, as it:

  • Contains antioxidant properties
  • Helpful to reduce heart disease risk
  • Source of hydration
  • May have benefits against diabetes

One cup of coconut water (240ml) can provide:

Carbs 9 grams
Fiber  3 grams
Protein  2 grams 
Vitamin C  10%
Magnesium  15%
Manganese  17%
Potassium  17%
Sodium  11%
Calcium  6%

Rich in nutrients and vitamins like riboflavin, niacin, and folates, coconut water has antiviral and antibacterial properties that can help increase your body’s immune system.

10. Benefits of a proper sleeping schedule

We often neglect one crucial factor when we talk about boosting immunity and keeping our insides healthy; A proper slumbertime.

Planning a sleep schedule is essential for:

  • Better productivity and concentration
  • Calorie regulation
  • More energy and better coordination
  • Preventing stress
  • Lower inflammation 

According to CDC, the breakdown is as follows:

  1. Newborns (0-3 months)- 14-17 hours
  2. Infants(4-12 months)- 12 – 16 hours
  3. Toddler (1-2 years)- 11-14 hours
  4. Preschool (3-5 years)- 10-13 hours
  5. School age (6-12 years)- 9-12 hours
  6. Teen (13-18 years)- 8-10 hours
  7. Adult (18-60 years)- 7 plus hours
  8. Adult (61-64 years)- 7-9 hours
  9. Adults (65+ years)- 7-8 hours

So plan your time to hit the pay and maintain smooth functioning!

11. Healthy breakfast options: Cornflakes with milk!

cornflakes in plate
Add fruits and nuts to your bowl of cornflakes to enhance the nutritive value.

A healthy breakfast can give a good headstart to your head. Is cornflakes your go to breakfast option? Allow us to bring something more to you.

What Else Can You Add To Your Bowl Of Cornflakes?

  • Banana
  • Almonds
  • Roasted flax seeds
  • Almond milk

Vitamin and mineral content:

Banana- rich in potassium

Almonds – rich in Vitamin E 

Roasted flax seeds – high in omega 3

Almond milk – low in calories, high in calcium and vitamin E

12. Immunity boosting beverage: Tea 

Discovery of tea dates back to almost 5000 years, and since then it has been one of the most important beverages, and for good!

Let us learn few crucial benefits of tea:

  • Helps in weight management
  • Improves heart health
  • Antioxidant-rich
  • Less caffeine than coffee

Recipe

Make your tea appetizing with this easy chai masala recipe: 

  • Green cloves – 1.5 tbsp
  • Cinnamon stick – 3 to 4 
  • Cloves – ½ tbsp
  • Black pepper – ½ to 1 tsp

Method:

  • Step 1: Dry roast the above ingredients.
  • Step 2: Cool them completely.
  • Step 3: Grind all of these into a fine powder.
  • Step 4: Now add the grated nutmeg.
  • Step 5:  Add the ginger powder.
  • Step 6: Mix everything well and keep it in an air tight container.
  • Step 7: Use 1-2 tsp per cup.

13. A quick way to boost your energy: Exercise!

A quick session of exercise can multiply your work compatibility, but before learning more about it let us see some facts-

  • Only 10% of people are successful at losing weight by diet alone.
  • It takes the body six to eight weeks to adapt to an exercise program.
  • Nearly 50% of all young people ages 12-21 are not vigorously active on a daily basis. 

Is working out an empty stomach safe? 

This practise is called ‘Fasted Cardio’, which is working out an empty stomach can help reduce weight and burn more fat. However, exercising after breakfast can boost energy and improve performance further. 

What are the few exercises that can boost your energy?

These are the few activities that might help:

  • Cat camel stretch
  • Jumping jacks 
  • Balancing table pose 
  • Leg squats 
  • Push ups 
  • Bicycle crunches

14. Let’s celebrate a popular Indian breakfast: Poha!

There are a certain benefits of Poha and therefore it can be easily considered as a wholesome meal, let us see how-

  • It remains low in calories
  • Added veggies makes it a balanced meal
  • It has about 76.9% of carbohydrates 
  • It is rich in fibre
  • Helpful in curbing mid day meal cravings
  • It is good for those having diabetes, skin and heart problems

Recipe

Instead of the regular poha, opt for this combination-

  • Poha – 1 cup
  • Curd  – 2 cups
  • Gur (Jaggery) – as per taste
  • Protein powder – 1 to 2 tsp
  • Mix everything well and consume immediately.
  • Water can be added to loosen a bit. 

Few benefits of the ingredients above-

  • Curd: It is probiotic and helps boost immunity. It also helps in improving digestion.
  • Gur: It helps to cleanse the liver, and is rich in zinc and selenium.
  • Protein Powder: It aids muscle growth and supports weight management.
  • A great breakfast option for Summers.

Share this recipe with your friends who love poha!

15. Let’s check a healthy smoothie recipe!

A wholesome smoothie can be a best go-to energy drink, so let us check out this recipe-

Recipe

Ingredients – 

  • Mango Pulp- 1.5 cups
  • Curd – 2.5 cups
  • Chopped banana- 1
  • Honey- 2 Tbsp
  • Oats- 2 Tbsp
  • Almond powder- 2 tbsp 

Method

  • Step 1: Blitz all the ingredients in a blender.
  • Step 2: Ice cubes can be added
  • Step 3: Top it up with chia seeds (1 tbsp)
  • Step 4: Roasted coconut flakes (1 tbsp)
  • Step 5: Roasted watermelon seeds (1 tbsp)

Benefits of the above ingredients

  • Mango- Contains calories, protein, carbs 
  • Curd- Improves digestion
  • Banana- Contains antibacterial properties
  • Honey- Antioxidant 
  • Oats- Improves blood sugar control
  • Almond powder- It is high in vitamin E and magnesium

16. Meditation: A medium for overall well being!

Let us see few popular meditation types-

  • Mindfulness meditation
  • Spiritual meditation
  • Focused meditation
  • Movement meditation
  • Mantra meditation 

What is a proper way to meditate?

  • Sit or lie comfortably
  • Close your eyes
  • Breathe naturally
  • Focus your attention on your breath and how your body moves with each inhalation and exhalation. 

How is it helpful? 

Meditation helps in-

  • Improving your memory
  • Reducing blood pressure
  • Slowing down some neurodegenerative diseases
  • Increasing neuroplasticity of the brain
  • Boosting immunity and cognitive functioning 

Meditation is a way for nourishing the divinity in you! 

17. There is nothing more wholesome than a healthy omelette!

Adding eggs to your diet during covid is beneficial
Add a handful of vegetables to your omelete to amp up its nutrition quotient.

A single large boiled egg can provide you with-

  • Vitamin A: 6% of the RDA 
  • Folate: 5% of the RDA 
  • Vitamin B5: 7% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B12: 9% of the RDA 
  • Vitamin B2: 15% of the RDA 
  • Phosphorus: 9% of the RDA 
  • Selenium: 22% of the RDA 

RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance): 3 whole eggs per day are perfectly healthy.

Recipe

Add the following ingredients to your everyday omelet to make it more nutritious.

Ingredients

  • Eggs –  4
  • Black pepper – 5 to 6 crushed
  • Tomatoes – 2 medium
  • Fresh coriander sprigs – 3 to 4
  • Flax seeds – roasted – 1/2 tsp
  • Raw garlic slivers – 4 to 5 
  • Olive oil – 2.5 tsp approx
  • Salt – to taste

Method

  • Heat up a pan.
  • Add the olive oil.
  • Add the garlic. Brown them a bit.
  • Whisk eggs, season them with salt and pepper.
  • Pour it in the pan and let it cook on one side.
  • Place tomato slices, coriander sprigs and flax seeds on it.
  • Carefully flip and cook on the other side.
  • Cook and serve immediately.

18. Benefits of milk in our day-to-day routine

milk in jar and glass
Calcium absorption is directly related to Vitamin D.

There have been multiple debates over time about the benefits of having milk, both for adults and children. Here are nine essential nutritious benefits that one can derive from milk-

  • Calcium: Builds healthy bones and teeth
  • Protein: Serves as a source of energy 
  • Potassium: Helps maintain a healthy blood pressure
  • Phosphorous: Generates energy
  • Vitamin D: Helps maintain bones
  • Vitamin B12: Maintains healthy red blood cells
  • Vitamin A: Maintains the immune system
  • Riboflavin (B12): Converts food into energy
  • Niacin: Metabolizes sugars

Calcium needs

All in all, women aged between 19 and 50 need 1000 milligrams of calcium per day and 1,200 milligrams after the age of 51.

Whereas, men aged between 19 to 70 require 1000 milligrams of calcium per day and 1,200 milligrams thereafter.

Why is vitamin D intake essential after our body acquires calcium? 

One cup of milk supplies around 30% of our daily vitamin D needs. Calcium makes your bones strong, but it takes an adequate amount of vitamin D for your body to help absorb the calcium intake. 

After all, it is always better to learn about our nutrition intakes before we prepare our meal plans!

19. Ways to release anxiety at home!

Mental health and physical health deserve equal importance. Anxiety, although treatable, very few people come out and seek proper treatment for it! Let us look at some ways to reduce anxiety at home-

  • Exercises 
  • Reduce caffeine anxiety
  • Write your thoughts: Journaling
  • Avoid procrastination: Get in a habit of making a to-do list
  • Practise yoga
  • Meditation/Mindfulness

Supplements that promote stress and anxiety reduction-

  • Omega 3 fatty acids
  • Green tea
  • Lemon balm
  • Ashwagandha 

Note: Consult with a doctor if you have any previous medications. 

What can you do for a quick impact: Deep Breathing 

The body scan technique blends breath focus with progressive muscle relaxation. After a few minutes, you focus on one part of the body or a group of muscles at a time and mentally release any physical tension you feel there. 

Remember you are not alone in this!

20. A wholesome meal to keep you fit as a fiddle!

Instead of your usual plain idli, carrot sambhar, coconut chutney, swap it up with-

Recipe Ideas

  • Millet based idlis and dosas. These are packed with protein.
  • Add some carrots. It contains calcium and vitamin A.
  • Include moringa which is rich in antioxidants.
  • Ghia or bottle gourd helps enhance immunity
  • Adding amla or Indian gooseberry gives a boost of Vitamin C.
  • Peanuts are high in zinc and can be easily added to multiple dishes.
  • Coriander chutneys may help the immune booster
  • Coconut is a great ingredient to add to your meals.
  • Green chillies- combats sinus infections 

Make use of these ingredients to increase your nutrition intake!

21. Chutney recipes to compliment your usual meals!

green chutney with salad
This green chutney gives a boost of Vitamin C and is just as delicious!

Let us look at the following chutney recipe to supplement our meals with nutritions!

Recipe – Green Chutney With Vitamin C

  • Coriander leaves – 300 gms
  • Amla – 3 pieces
  • Marua leaves – 10-15 leaves
  • Green chillies – 2
  • Tomato – 2 
  • Bhuna jeera- 1 Tbsp
  • Black peppercorns – 3 to 4
  • Ginger – 1 

Method

  • Step 1: Add all the ingredients to a blender jar. 
  • Step 2: Blend it till all the ingredients turn into a coarse paste.
  • Step 3: Add a few tablespoons of water to blend it further.
  • Step 4: This chutney can be stored in the refrigerator and consumed uptil 5-7 days.
  • Note – You can add rock salt to your chutney right before consumption if required.

Recipe – Sprouted Kala Chana Chutney

  • Kala chana –  ½ cup
  • Fresh grated coconut -2 tbsp
  • Dried red chilli -1
  • Soaked tamarind pulp – ¼ tsp
  • Salt to taste.
  • Ground nut or coconut oil -2 tsp
  • Black mustard – ½ tsp
  • Chana dal  – ¼ tsp
  • Udad dal – ¼ tsp
  • Fresh curry leaves – 5 to 6

Method

  • Soak kala chana overnight. Later leave it to sprout in a cloth or sprout box.
  • Grind together the folliwng with the help of water-
  • Sprouted kala chana, fresh grated coconut, Dried red chilli, salt and 
  • Soaked tamarind pulp. 
  • Give a tadka to this mixture – 
  • Heat ground nut or coconut oil.
  • Add black mustard and let it crackle.
  • Add chana dal, udad dal and fresh curry leaves.
  • Pour the tadka over the chutney.

Eat nutritious and stay healthy!

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some interesting FAQs on immunity boosting foods for COVID.

1. What are signs of a weak immune system?

Answer: A few signs can be high stress levels, constantly catching cold, feeling tired all the time, frequent infections, low energy levels. One can do well and improve immunity with having a balanced diet and maintaining a proper schedule along with some form of workout.

2. What foods can harm immunity?

Answer: A few foods that might harm your immunity can be, salty foods, fried foods, fast foods, added sugar, foods high in omega-6 fats, and highly refined carbs. 

3. Does hot water increase immunity?

Answer: Warm water stimulates appetite, helps indigestion, cleans the urinary bladder and is also good for curing some diseases. Hence, it can act as a natural immunity booster in a small way.

4. What is the most powerful immunity booster?

Answer: Vitamin C is one of the biggest immune system boosters of all.

5. How can I boost my immune system fast?

Answer: Eat a diet high in fruits and vegetables, get adequate sleep, try to minimize stress, and exercise regularly. These can be a few ways that will help you to build a strong immunity system.

Final Words

Our body is the only constant that we will carry throughout, and somehow we have been successful in neglecting to learn more about it or to take care of it. Be it because of our tough work schedules, or our carefree attitude, we have stopped paying much attention to it. The current times have made us realise the crucial need of evaluating our lifestyle patterns. And in turn making us aware of our food habits.

This article will make you aware of the things that you have been missing out on in order to comply with your hectic work patterns, such as, immunity boosting foods, immunity boosting practices and will make you turn your focus on what is more important! Moreover, a healthy diet is beneficial but not enough. Along with a healthy diet, certain activities, practices are becoming a dire need in our day-to-day life for improving our immune system. 

So, engage with us in the comments below and tell us your favorite meal, your go-to energy drink or your immunity boosting practices and let us all grow healthier together!

Team Mishry

Team Mishry is our team of researchers, reviewers, digital content producers, and writers who are part of every review in our test kitchen. They test, taste, and tirelessly break down a product's features, discuss pros and cons and arrive at a final verdict after much debate, deliberations and dialogue. All the reviews where crucial inputs have been derived from multiple team members are where the byline belongs to the entire team - Team Mishry!

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