Zinc-Rich Foods For Vegetarians: 5 Indian Foods That Can Help You Boost Immunity

Zinc food sources: This nutrient is required by the human body for strong immunity. Here are some desi foods high in zinc that can easily be a part of your diet.

Zinc-Rich Foods For Vegetarians: 5 Indian Foods That Can Help You Boost Immunity

Zinc food sources: You can add sesame seeds to your diet to increase overall zinc intake

Highlights

  • Zinc is helps in boosting immunity and supports metabolim function
  • This nutrient also supports wound healing
  • Bajra, rajgira and sesame seeds are good sources of zinc

Zinc is a nutrient that is required for many vital roles in the human body. During the ongoing pandemic, the importance of eating healthy for optimal health has been stressed enough. Zinc is one of the nutrients that should be a part of your diet in required quantities. It plays a crucial role in the development and function of immune cells. Other than keeping your immune system healthy, zinc ensures healthy metabolism function, promotes wound healing, prevents acne and reduces the risk of age-related disorders. It is commonly believed that vegans and vegetarians are at a higher risk of zinc deficiency. However, Nutritionist Lovneet Batra busts this myth in a series of posts on Instagram. Through these posts, she shared vegan zinc-rich foods that are easily available.

Zinc food sources: Add these desi foods to your diet

"Zinc is a nutrient that people need to stay healthy. It helps the immune system fight off invading bacteria and viruses. The body also needs zinc to make proteins and DNA, the genetic material in all cells. Zinc also helps wounds heal and is important for proper senses of taste and smell," Batra mentions in her post.

1. Bajra

The nutritionist describes bajra as affordable yet highly nutritious that can be used in multiple ways in your diet. Bajra or pearl millet can be consumed as a grain/seed or ground into flour. It can offer you protein, fibre and other essential vitamins and minerals, one of which is zinc. During the summer season, you may not find bajra easily.

Also read: Zinc Food Sources For Vegetarians

2. Sesame seeds

Sesame seeds are a powerhouse of nutrients including zinc, calcium, selenium, iron and vitamin B6. "They are heat-inducing, so it's important to watch your intake - not more than 2 tablespoons a day. Or, you can soak sesame seeds in water overnight, roast it and have it as a snack," Batra mentions.

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Immunity-boosting foods: Consume sesame seeds in moderation in summers
Photo Credit: iStock

3. Paneer

It is popularly consumed as a vegetarian source of protein. Paneer or cottage cheese is also a good source of calcium and zinc. You can add it to curries, sandwiches, salad or use it as a stuffing in parathas or roti.

Also read: Tofu Vs Paneer: Which Is Healthier For Weight Loss

4. Bengal gram dal

Dals are also a common part of an Indian meal. These are high in protein and are easy on your digestive system. Bengal Gram Dal is a split kala chana that can be prepared in multiple ways. This dal is a good source of zinc that can help your immune system function well.

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Zinc for immunity: You can cook dals in different ways and add to your diet
Photo Credit: iStock

5. Amarnath flour

Amaranth or rajgira is well-packed with nutrients. It is a gluten-free source of protein, fibre, zinc and iron. It has also been associated with many health benefits, including reduced inflammation, lower cholesterol levels and increased weight loss. You can use rajgira flour to make rotis or pancakes or use amaranth seeds in muesli.

Also read: Reasons Why You Should Choose Amaranth/Rajgira Over Quinoa

If you are a vegan, add these foods high in zinc to your diet today.

(Lovneet Batra is a Delhi-based nutritionist)

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.