At Wickshire Senior Living, our dining services feature delicious, wholesome cuisine, including a wide assortment of the best immunity-boosting foods. Call one of our team members at 855.914.4248 today to learn more about our chef-catered, nutritionist-approved meals.

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it reminds us of the importance of maintaining healthy immune systems, our bodies’ actual first line of defense against all communicable illnesses. Although individual needs may vary, nearly everyone benefits from a balanced diet containing adequate protein for muscle building and maintenance. The best immunity-boosting foods, micronutrients from plants, augmented with medicinal herbs for health-enhancing benefits (and great flavor!). If we have been taught anything from the pandemic, no diet, lifestyle modification, or diet protects us from Covid- 19. With that having said, proper handwashing, or sanitizing, social distancing, and wearing an approved mask can significantly reduce or prevent you from contracting Covid-19

Food Standard Guidelines for Assisted Living

Planned menus must be posted outside the dining room, and a copy of the menu is left in each resident’s room. Residents must be notified before the meal if there is a substitution. The facility is responsible for keeping a record of the substitution for six months. The resident’s healthcare provider makes a recommendation on the type of diet each resident will receive. The dietary department is responsible for preparing regular and therapeutic diets. Through careful planning, the menu will consist of the best immunity-boosting foods for seniors.

The State Operations Manual Appendix PP – Guidance to Surveyors for Long Term Care Facilities, tag F368 Frequency of meals states that each resident receives and the facility provides at least three meals daily, at regular times comparable to normal mealtimes in the community. In addition, the facility must offer snacks at bedtime daily. With three carefully planned meals coupled with snacks, the residents have a better opportunity to meet their dietary needs.

Aging Affects the Immune System

The first thing to remember is immunity is your body’s defense system. As a result of getting older, it tends to get weaker. The first line of defense is proper nutrition and incorporating the best immunity-boosting foods for seniors. Seniors should get plenty of exercise. As a result, it can boost their immune system. Ultimately eating healthy will keep your immune system strong and help fight out infections and viruses. The lack of proper nutrition may cause falls, thus making it difficult to heal. Other areas to pay attention to are the number of alcoholic drinks one has a day and stopping smoking.

 Immune System Function

The state in which the body recognizes foreign materials and can neutralize them before they can do any harm.

The immune response, in short, is how your body recognizes and defends itself against viruses, substances, and bacteria, that appear foreign and harmful.

Healthy Foods for Seniors

When it comes to fruits and vegetables, the whole sometimes is greater than the “sum of its parts.” This means that fresh, unprocessed produce contains hundreds, perhaps thousands of interworking compounds to make sure that your cells receive not only a particular vitamin, like Vitamin C but numerous additional elements like fiber that permit the food to help correctly digested. Not to mention, doesn’t matter how much of a given magical nutrient a product boasts of having if it can’t make it through our gut to the cells that need it!

Best Immunity Boosting Foods For Seniors

Yogurt is a source of lactobacillus (a probiotic, good bacteria) and is significantly packed with vitamins and protein.

Ginger tea coupled with holy basil and honey help cure ailments, such as sore throat, cough, and cold. Equally important immune-boosting teas include chamomile teas, peppermint teas, licorice root teas, turmeric teas. 

IMMUNE BOOSTING TURMERIC TEA

This ginger and turmeric tea will help boost your immune system and keep you healthy during the cold season.

INGREDIENTS

5 cups of water

Yellow peel of 1 lemon, use a veggie peeler

2-inch piece of ginger cut in thin rounds, skin on

2-inch piece of turmeric root cut in thin rounds or grated, skin on

Tiny pinch of cayenne pepper

1 crack of black pepper

Juice of 1 lemon

1 teaspoon virgin coconut oil, butter, or avocado oil

Honey, preferably raw

INSTRUCTIONS

Bring the water, lemon peel, ginger, turmeric, cayenne, and black pepper to a bare simmer, turn the heat down to low, cook for 7 minutes. You don’t want the pot to bubble or boil; it’s harmful to the nutrients in the turmeric. Take off the heat and squeeze in the lemon juice and stir in the coconut oil. Strain the tea into a cup and add 1 teaspoon of honey. If using raw honey, wait for the tea to cool down a few minutes, so the heat doesn’t destroy some of its nutrients.

Red Wine, Chocolate, and Coffee Speaking of antioxidants, many of these are contained in deeply colored and richly flavored foods you already enjoy, such as the resveratrol found in red wine or the flavenoids in dark chocolate. Just make sure that you keep the amount of added sugar to a minimum and drink organic, filtered coffee to maximize benefits.

Fruits and Vegetables

Berries Brightly colored berries such as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries contain an abundance of antioxidants, which most nutritionists consider nature’s MVP for warding off disease. Antioxidants prevent damage to your cells while they’re fighting against invading pathogens and have the added benefit of being present in many of our favorite foods already, such as Artichokes, asparagus, cabbage.

Garlic and Onions For hundreds of years, parents have treated sniffles with allium vegetables like garlic, shallots, and onion. In addition to being at the center of most of the world’s cuisine, these zesty veggies are full of glutathione, an antioxidant required for every cell in your body to perform optimally.

 Citrus Fruits and Green Vegetables Vitamin C is one of the few nutrients animals cannot produce, so it must be derived from plant sources. Fortunately, it’s highly available in an enormous variety of foods, from citrus foods like oranges and nectarines to green vegetables like bell peppers and broccoli, not to mention broccoli is a supercharged veggie-packed full of fiber, antioxidants, Vitamine A,  C, and E. Furthermore, if you tend towards anemia and take supplemental iron, it is a must to eat a good amount of Vitamin C at the same meal to enhance absorption. We recommended that women consume 75 mg and men 90 mg of vitamin C daily, not to exceed 2,000 mg in a supplement.

Foods It seems that everyone is talking about the gut these days, and for a good reason. In addition to supporting your ability to digest all other foods, mounting evidence suggests that a healthy gut is a necessary precursor to good mental. Its nutrients. Enjoy!

Red Wine, Chocolate, and Coffee Speaking of antioxidants, many of these are contained in deeply colored and richly flavored foods you already enjoy, such as the resveratrol found in red wine or the flavenoids in dark chocolate. Just make sure that you keep the amount of added sugar to a minimum and drink organic, filtered coffee to maximize benefits.

Cold Fighting

“When it comes to preventing and fighting off colds, vitamin E tends to take a backseat to vitamin C. However, having a powerful antioxidant is key to a healthy immune system. It’s a fat-soluble vitamin, which means it requires the presence of fat to be absorbed properly. Nuts, such as almonds, are packed with the vitamin and also have healthy fats. A half-cup serving of almonds, which is about 46 whole, shelled almonds, provides around 100 percent Trusted Source of the recommended daily amount. Adults only need about 15 mg Trusted Source of vitamin E each day. health!”

One of the best ways to support digestive health is to consume probiotics in fermented foods. Some popular sources include greek yogurt (especially beneficial with protein and very low sugar in plain varieties), pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, and even bread.

Lack of vitamin C

Can make you prone to certain illnesses; symptoms include

  1. Easy bruising.
  2. Weakness and tiredness
  3. Muscle and joint pains.
  4. Spots that look like tiny, red-blue bruises on your skin.

Other symptoms can include:

  • Weight loss.
  • Problems fighting infections
  • Swelling and discoloration of your gums.
  • Nosebleeds.
  • Changes in your bones.
  • Tooth loss
  • Sudden and unexpected bleeding from your gums.
  • Splitting hair.
  • Bleeding into joints, causing severe joint pains.
  • Poor healing of wounds
  • Dry skin

For example, it is equally important to take the flu and pneumonia vaccines during the cold and flu season.

Wickshire Senior Living: Providing the Best Immunity-Boosting Foods for Seniors

It does no good to provide and prepare these foods if not consumed! Fortunately, the 21st century home cooking revolution has allowed tastier, healthier means of food preparation like steaming, braising, and baking to become commonplace in most kitchens. Gone are the days of tasteless boiled or canned produce, with farm-to-table restaurants, farmer’s markets, and CSAs giving communities access to locally-grown, fresh food, much of which tastes great with a little salt and olive oil.

Food preparation is an art as well as a science, which is why we’ve collaborated with some top chefs to create a tempting menu at Wickshire Senior Living. Call us today at 855.914.4248 to learn more about our dietary program.