Your immune system needs a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals to keep its energy up and going.

Below are 5 easy recipes to make your own immunity-boosting beverages at home.

Green Smoothie

The greens in this recipe are the powerhouse nutrition for vitamins A and C, as well as protein, fibre and calcium.

Ingredients

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  • 2 ripe medium bananas
  • 1 ripe pear or apple, peeled if desired, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped kale leaves, tough stems removed (see Notes)
  • ½ cup cold orange juice
  • ½ cup cold water
  • 12 ice cubes
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed

Directions

  1. Place bananas, pear (or apple), kale, orange juice, water, ice cubes and flaxseed in a blender. Pulse a few times, then puree until smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary.

Carrot Orange Juice

A juice containing carrots that contain carotenes that help nourish the thymus gland. The thymus gland is responsible for much of the immune system functions.

Ingredients

  • 3 medium carrots, peeled
  • 2 medium oranges, peel and pith removed
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds, optional

Directions

  1. Juice the carrots, then the oranges, following your juicer’s specific settings for each. Stir in the chia seeds if using and let soak for 5 minutes. Serve the juice immediately over ice, if desired.

Kiwi Watermelon Lime Juice

Kiwis has more Vitamin C than an orange. Mix in this smoothie recipe.

Ingredients

  • 2 kiwis, peeled
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped watermelon
  • 2 large, juicy limes, peel and pith removed
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds, optional

Directions

  1. Juice, in this order, the kiwis, watermelon and limes, following your juicer’s specific settings for each. Stir in the chia seeds if using and let soak for 5 minutes. Serve the juice immediately over ice, if desired.

Coconut Water Smoothie with Mango Banana and Strawberries

Nicknamed the “water of life,” coconut water delivers nutrients to the body while boosting the immune system. Use in this smoothie recipe.

Ingredients

  • Coconut water, regular or flavoured
  • 2 bananas
  • 2 mangos
  • 1 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons honey

Directions

  1. Fill ice trays with the coconut water and freeze until solid.
  2. Place the fruit, honey and 12 to 14 coconut water flavoured ice cubes into a blender and blend until smooth. Serve immediately.

Orange Ice Tea

A study showed that immune system blood cells from tea drinkers responded five times faster to germs. Building on that, and adding in Vitamin C infused orange juice leads to a delicious iced tea.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 7 black tea bags
  • 3 cups sparkling water, chilled
  • 1/2 small orange, thinly sliced
  • Ice
  • Fresh mint or basil sprigs, to garnish

Directions

  1. For the syrup: In a small saucepan, bring the orange juice and sugar to a boil over medium-high heat. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool for 20 minutes.
  2. For the tea: In a small saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Add the tea bags and remove the pan from the heat. Allow the tea to steep and cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes. Remove the tea bags and discard. Pour the tea and syrup into a pitcher and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. To serve: Pour the sparkling water into the pitcher and add the orange slices. Pour the tea into 4 ice-filled glasses. Garnish with fresh mint, or basil, and serve.

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