Proper nutrition plays a vital role in maintaining a strong immune system. This is particularly important for young children who have not yet developed a robust immune system like an adult. Incorporating nutritious foods into our diet is the best way to obtain the necessary vitamins and minerals to support our health and immune systems.
When many people think of what vitamins they need to support their immune system, they automatically think of the highly esteemed Vitamin C. Vitamin C is a fantastic immune system-supporting vitamin that works by stimulating the production of antibodies. It can be found in citrus fruits, bell peppers, strawberries, and tomatoes. However, it is not the only immune-supporting vitamin that we should focus on.
A diet rich in protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and zinc is also beneficial for maintaining good health. Lean meats, poultry, beans, nuts, and seeds are all great sources of protein and zinc and they aid our body in healing and recovery. Foods like sweet potatoes, broccoli, spinach, and eggs are all great sources of Vitamin A, which works to keep our skin and tissues in our mouth, stomach, intestines, and respiratory system healthy. And then there is Vitamin E that works as a powerful antioxidant, supporting our immune systems. It can be found in seeds, nuts, vegetable oils, and nut butters.
As you think about how to incorporate more immune system-supporting nutrients into your diet, here are some great recipes from the American Heart Association to help you get started!