Some foods are bad news for your immune system. Do well to steer clear of them as much as possible.
foods that weaken the immune system
1. Store-bought beef
Beef is one of the most consumed meats around the world. This has left cattle rearers with a huge demand for livestock. Big companies are also taking advantage of this high demand by entering into beef processing.
To keep up with the growing demand, cattle are fed with grains instead of grass – their natural food. The cows bred for the beef industry are fed with corn, soy and other concentrates so that they gain weight quickly.
These unnatural foods are usually genetically modified to affect the health of the cows. The cows are also not left to roam but are confined to stalls to maximize the use of land.
This leads to the spread of diseases which are quickly treated with antibiotics and hormone treatments designed to make them gain weight quickly enough to be slaughtered.
And how about supermarket practices that further reduce the quality of the meat? Some stores treat their meat with chemicals to preserve it, expiry labels could be manipulated, and the meats could contain E. coli and other pathogens – which plastic wraps cannot adequately contain.
2. Fish high in mercury
High on our list of foods that weaken the immune system are fishes that contain mercury. Mercury – one of the most toxic elements on the planet is found mainly in large fishes. Marlin, Mackerel, Tilefish and Shark contain high mercury.
Mercury poisoning can cause developmental, reproductive, immunological, and reproductive side effects. It is even more deadly in fetuses and developing children. Pregnant women are particularly warned to stay away from fishes high in mercury.
Many people consume wheat more than any grain. It would interest you to know that wheat is one of the foods that weaken the immune system. Most of the wheat available today is the result of genetic modification.
Our wheat intake doesn’t come from the grains we eat alone. Since animals are fed with grains, beans and antibiotics, the toxicity of gluten is amplified. Foods made with wheat flour raise your blood sugar higher than any other food. Consuming wheat increases the appetite leading to the consumption of more calories than the body needs.
4. Packaged frozen chicken
Chickens are omnivores, so the most nutritious chickens are those that are allowed to spend time in pastures eating both grass and insects. Similar to cows, farmed chickens are fed with corn instead of being allowed to roam to eat insects.
The weight gaining properties of corn makes it a cheaper alternative to use. They are also kept in cages and routinely fed with antibiotics to curb the spread of disease. These antibiotics accumulate in their flesh and are consumed by humans. Their litters are also contaminated and are used as fertilizers for crops.
5. Hydrogenated fats
Although not a food in itself, hydrogenated fats are commonly used in fast foods. French fries, chicken fingers, margarine, bread, cakes and biscuits all contain trans fat. Because hydrogenated fats are not saturated fats, we may think that they’re healthy to consume.
Hydrogenated fat is a liquid vegetable oil that has been treated with hydrogen. The result is a synthetic fat with a higher density. It thickens the blood after it is eaten. This forces the circulatory system to work harder to push blood around inside it.
It also sticks to and clogs arteries, increasing the risk of high blood pressure, blood clots and heart attacks. Hydrogenated fats are not natural and the body cannot process them as such. They’ve been found to share a molecular semblance to plastic thereby earning them their place on our list of foods that weaken the immune system.
6. Packaged whole milk
When the milk comes from a cow, it contains cream which separates and settles at the top. This whole milk would have to be shaken to reintegrate the fat into the liquid before drinking.
Most commercially available milk today is homogenized. This means that it has been subjected to some processes which break the fat molecules into smaller pieces and keeps the fat evenly distributed throughout the product.
The finished product does not need to be shaken to be consumed. This may sound convenient but has been proven to be dangerous to health. It also causes allergic reactions in some people.
7. Genetically modified foods
Unlike other harmful foods that are listed on the label, GMOs are not listed on the packaging. Scientists genetically modify crops to make them resistant to pests, increase yield, and reduce maturation time.
Genes from viruses, bacteria, insects, animals or even humans are artificially inserted into the DNA of food crops. The results of testing on animals show that consuming these foods is detrimental to health.
The chemicals sprayed on these plants remain on them even after washing. It is then fed to cows and incorporated into their meat, fat, milk which we then consume. Genetically modified foods include a variety of corn, soybeans, apple, and potato.
8. Store-bought fruits and vegetables
Some of the vegetables and fruits that sustain us simultaneously contain substances that can harm us. Until recently, most fruits had their seasons and were only available then. Thanks or no thanks to modern technology, most fruits are now available all year round.
An unripe fruit contains high lectin which is detrimental to human health. These unripe fruits are picked, artificially gassed to change their colour and then sold. Of course, this does not reduce the lectin content in the fruit.
9. Artificial sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners Sweeteners such as aspartame, saccharine, and sucralose are found in a wide range of food products. Chewing gums, candy, yoghurt, desserts and energy drinks and much more.
Two hundred times sweeter than sugar, aspartame consumption has been linked to the weakening of the immune system. It is also dangerous for children who do not have fully developed blood-brain barriers. Consumption of foods with artificial sweeteners also leads to weight gain since they cause us to eat more.
10. Food additives
Food additives such as Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) is one of the most potentially harmful food additives. MSG makes otherwise stale foods palatable. Excessive use of this chemical has been linked to reproductive issues, brain damage, weight gain and cancer.
MSG was originally extracted from seaweed. Most MSG available to us now are produced by fermenting starches, sugar cane, sugar beets and molasses. It also produces mild adverse reactions such as headaches, drowsiness, nausea, chest pains and general weakness.
Some items on our list of foods that weaken the immune system may seem unavoidable. When eating questionable meals, it’s safer to take extra fibre supplements. Also, most of the foods that weaken the immune system listed here are natural foods and therefore are safer when bought from local farmers. By doing this, you not only support the local farmers but your health as well.