The Worst Eating Habits That Weaken Immunity
Consuming too much alcohol.
"Alcohol can suppress the body's immune response to infection," says Mary Albus RD, CDN, "because with alcohol consumption, it can take the body longer to recognize and respond to a developing infection."
Consuming too much sugar.
"Studies have connected regular intake of foods high in added sugar to impaired immune function," says Albus, "and that's because white blood cells, which are the cells involved in fighting infection, are negatively impacted by overconsumption of sugar."
And too much salt.
Adults should aim for less than 2,300 milligrams per day, yet American adults average about 3,400 milligrams. "Following a high-sodium diet that is rich in processed foods can trigger inflammation in the body and increase the risk for chronic disease," says Albus.
Not getting enough fruits & vegetables.
"Fruits and vegetables contain high amounts of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants," says Matt Mazzino RD, LD, "and these compounds are essential to support reactions for your immune system and fight off infection."
A lack of vitamin D.
Let's not forget about our vitamins! "Vitamin D is one of the most important nutrients to support a healthy immune system," says Mazzino, "because of its anti-inflammatory properties that are known to enhance the function of immune cells."
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