Laura Dotson
November 22, 2020

When the immune system is working like a well oiled machine we don’t even notice it! But when it’s not, oh man… In the midst of a pandemic, there has never been a more timely and worthwhile moment to strengthen your immune system1. Just like our muscles require resistance, to build mass our immune system requires optimal nutrients to fight off infections. In this blog, we’ll cover immune-boosting foods backed by science. 

Several vitamins - Vitamin A, B6, C, D and E plus trace elements like Zinc, play an important role in supporting both the innate and adaptive immune systems2. Our innate immune system is like a bouncer at a bar which works as a general defense against pathogens. Our adaptive immune system is like a bounty hunter, which targets very specific pathogens our body has already come in contact with. Deficiencies or suboptimal status in any of these nutrients can negatively impact our immune function and decrease resistance to infections3. 

So what the heck can we do? Well it’s probably not news to you that a well balanced and diversey diet is important but knowing what foods have these nutrients may be a mystery to you. Don’t worry we go ya below are our top foods in each category to get you started.

Calder PC, Carr AC, Gombart AF, Eggersdorfer M. Optimal Nutritional Status for a Well-Functioning Immune System Is an Important Factor to Protect against Viral Infections. Nutrients. 2020;12(4):1181. Published 2020 Apr 23. doi:10.3390/nu12041181
Iddir M, Brito A, Dingeo G, et al. Strengthening the Immune System and Reducing Inflammation and Oxidative Stress through Diet and Nutrition: Considerations during the COVID-19 Crisis. Nutrients. 2020;12(6):1562. Published 2020 May 27. doi:10.3390/nu12061562
Molendijk I, van der Marel S, Maljaars PW. Towards a Food Pharmacy: Immunologic Modulation through Diet. Nutrients. 2019 Jun;11(6):1239.
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