Foods to Increase Regulatory T-Cells

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T-cells are a type of white blood cell that plays an important role in the body's immunity. Regulatory t-cells, a specific type of t-cell, is particularly important in maintaining a balance in the immune system. T-cells function and their quantity in the body can be affected by and also can contribute to many diseases and conditions including AIDS and certain kinds of cancer. Research shows that maintaining a healthy diet is one of the best ways to protect your immune system.

Green Tea

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Recent research shows that a component of green tea naturally increases regulatory t-cells. Scientists are now turning to green tea as a better option than medication. You should drink at least one cup of green tea a day, even when you are healthy, as a preventative measure. Green tea can be drunk cold or hot. If you don't like the taste of green tea, mask the taste by mixing it into juice, smoothies or even soup.


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Papaya, especially the Carica Papaya, has recently been found to increase regulatory t-cells, but it has been used to treat many diseases and cancers for centuries. The fruit, its seeds and even its leaves are found to be beneficial. Try eating some ripe fruit, dried fruit or even drinking some papaya leaf tea. The stronger the tea, the more effective it is said to be.

Vitamin and Mineral Rich Food

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Folic acid, vitamin B 6, riboflavin and thiamin are particularly important to the proper functioning of t-cells and their quantity. The list doesn't stop there. Foods rich in vitamins and minerals are essential to keeping t-cell count up, and that means eating a lot of fruits and vegetables. Raw fruits and vegetables are the best way to get a maximum amount of these nutrients. Dark leafy green vegetables, cauliflower, broccoli, squash, tomatoes, strawberries and carrots are all nutrient rich produce that may increase t-cells.

Protein, Healthy Fats and Fiber

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Protein and its amino acids are a vital ingredient in t-cell count. Many protein-rich foods also contain vitamins, minerals and healthy fatty acids that also increase t-cell function including liver, fish and shell fish. Intestinal health is also essential in increasing t-cell count because much of the immune system depends on the intestine to absorb nutrients. One of the best ways to improve intestinal health is by eating high fiber foods like whole grains and beans.