10 Umami Foods to Boost Your Immune System
- Umami is a unique savory or "meaty" flavor. It rounds out the five basic tastes with sweet, bitter, salty, and sour. Umami items get their unique flavor from the combination of amino acids.
- Many umami foods act as immune system boosters due to their antioxidant capacities. Here are 10 umami foods to try with your next plant based meal:
- 1.) Seaweed: Low in calories, high in antioxidants. Antioxidants play a key role in immune health. Antioxidants are powerful compounds that help keep your immune system strong. Try adding seaweed to soup, stir fry, and sauces. You can even add a small sheet of seaweed to a wrap or sandwich.
- 2.) Kimchi: Early studies show kimchi may strengthen the immune system through its bacteria and vitamin C content. The bacteria that aids in fermenting kimchi may help lower levels of inflammation triggered by disease. Vitamin C also acts as an immune system booster. Try adding kimchi to rice, eggs, stews, stir fry, pancakes, or even dumplings.
- 3.) Green tea: Two special antioxidants are the star of the show for green tea. These antioxidants have the ability to suppress activities of bacterial and viral factors. Enjoy green tea iced or warmed.
- 4.) Tomatoes: Loaded with lycopene, tomatoes can help immune function. They also are rich in vitamin C which is an immune system boosting nutrient. Add tomatoes to your salad, sandwich, wrap, eggs, pizza, soup, or pasta to complete your easy plant based meal.
- 5.) Mushrooms: The immune system may be activated by compounds found in mushrooms. Mushrooms may enhance your immune system while reducing inflammation which the immune system produces. Mushrooms work as a great vegan meatsubstitution to dishes like lasagna, burgers, tacos, pot pie, cabbage rolls, fajitas, enchiladas, nachos, and wontons.
- 6.) Garlic: Garlic contains allicin which is an immune booster. Allicin may help your body fight off viruses and other microorganisms. Garlic can easily be used when cooking. My favorite way to use garlic is sautéing or roasting vegetables.
- 7.) Lotus root: Another excellent source of vitamin C. Vitamin C contributes to the immune system through its ability to support a barrier function against pathogens. Lotus root is the perfect way to add variety to your next stir fry or salad.
- 8.) Tofu: This high protein plant-based food also offers benefits to the immune system through its nutrient, minerals, and antioxidant content. Tofu takes on the flavor of it's marinade or seasoning. Change up your flavor profile with honey-ginger, savory barbeque, sesame-ginger, Thai peanut, or tropical coconut.
- 9.) Walnuts: Hello vitamin E! Walnuts are a great source of vitamin E which is essential to the immune system to help fight off bacteria. Walnuts make as a great topper to oatmeal, cereal, yogurt, and salads.
- 10.) Asparagus: Vitamin C and vitamin E team up to make asparagus a great immune system booster. Asparagus makes for a great stand-alone side to your meal.
- Finally, koji is our favorite umami booster. Koji is the star ingredient in all Prime Roots products. Koji is a that mimics the taste and texture of beef, chicken, and seafood that you love and crave. With koji, you can still satisfy that meat craving but with a much healthier plant-based option. Get ready for your taste buds to be tricked!
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