Vitamin C has a reputation for being a feel-good nutrient, so it will come as no surprise that this list is full of foods with high levels of it. In the body, vitamin C behaves as an antioxidant, which means it protects cells from free-radical damage. Consuming it also helps the body better absorb iron, which is critical for normal immune-system function.
Although foods high in vitamin C won’t stop your flu symptoms, eating them regularly may help prevent illness down the line. There are other ways that foods fight infection and strengthen immune response. (Grandma wasn’t wrong about chicken soup, for example: The mixture of hydrating broth, healing herbs, fiber, protein and antioxidants makes the meal actually therapeutic.) Here are 11 of the best foods for your immune system.
Why they’re good for you
Jalapeño peppers get their spice from a compound called capsaicin, which is something of an all-star in the nutrition world. Capsaicin acts as an anti-inflammatory agent and may ease arthritis symptoms. Some research suggests it can also keep your metabolism humming.
How to eat them
Add diced jalapeño peppers to guacamole for an extra kick of flavor. You can also mix these peppers into your favorite cornbread recipe.