Nutrients that strengthen our immune system

Everyone’s body has an immune system. The immune system is what helps to protect us and our body against diseases, it is made up of cells, tissues and organs which help our immune system ward off nasty pathogens such as viruses and bacteria. Our immune system helps to keep us healthy and attacks germs by sending out messages to warn the body that these pathogens are attacking our body. The cells, tissues and organs that make up the immune system then go into action to destroy the pathogens and keep us healthy.

How do we keep our immune system healthy?

  • Washing our hands regularly
  • Eating nutritious foods
  • Plenty of fluids such as water
  • Regular exercise
  • Sleep

What are nutrients?

The foods we eat contain vitamins and minerals and these are what we call nutrients. Nutrients are what help our bodies function properly and keep us healthy. There are a range of nutrients that help support our immune system so that it can keep fighting off diseases.

What nutrients do I need to keep my immune system healthy?

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is important for our immune system because it is an antioxidant. Antioxidants protect the healthy cells in our body and stop damage from free radicals which are molecules that can damage the immune system. 

Great sources of vitamin C

Great sources of Vitamin C: kiwi fruit, oranges, pineapple and strawberries

Vitamin E

Similar to Vitamin C, Vitamin E is an antioxidant which helps product our immune system to ensure it can function properly to keep us healthy and fight off infection.

Great sources of vitamin E

Great sources of vitamin E: almonds, avocado, hazelnuts and sunflower oil

Zinc

An essential trace mineral, Zinc is required by all cells and over 300 enzyme activities within the body. Zinc plays an important role in boosting the cells within your body which positively impacts our immune system. When you do not have enough Zinc in your body, you are more likely to get sick. 

Great sources of Zinc

Great sources of zinc: red meat, chicken, pumpkin seeds and oysters

Micronutrients and your children