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Eight Foods That Boost Your Immune System

Our bodies have a built-in way of naturally fighting off sickness and help us get back to our normal selves. That’s the sole job of the immune system, which actually includes many different aspects of our bodies.


However, you can do some things in your day-to-day life that help your immune system do its job. That includes getting regular exercise and eating a balanced diet. There are some foods in particular that benefit your immune system.



Almonds contain vitamin E, an antioxidant that serves an important role in your body. Antioxidants protect your cells from free radicals, which damage your cells and have been linked to multiple illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease and cancer.


These make a great addition to yogurt and salads, or a tasty snack on their own.



Avocados make all the buzz in the health world for good reason. They’re high in monounsaturated fatty acids, which is the kind of ‘good fat’ your body needs. On top of that they boast vitamin E, vitamin C, iron and zinc.


Thanks to its mild flavor, avocado can be added to just about anything, including salads, stews and sandwiches.



Many people turn to oranges and orange juice to get a dose of vitamin C. It’s an essential nutrient for your immune system because it helps you generate antibodies. But did you know that just a single cup of chopped broccoli provides almost a full day's worth of vitamin C? It also includes vitamin A and iron!


Try squeezing some lemon over broccoli and roasting it in the oven.



Kale is often called a ‘superfood’ and rightly so. It’s packed with tons of nutrients, including vitamin A, which is important for healthy skin and mucous membranes.


Chopped kale can be added to just about any salad. If you’re struggling with the tough texture, you can also sauté it and serve it alongside dinner.



A popular tropical fruit, mangoes are full of nutrients, like vitamins A, C and E. The best part is, you can enjoy them even when they’re out of season. Frozen mangoes are commonly in the frozen section of grocery stores.


They can add a sweet burst of flavor to any salad, smoothie or savory dish.



Oysters are definitely the odd one on this list. But make no mistake, they’re great for your immune system. Oysters are packed with zinc, protein and iron. They also include some vitamin A.


You can pick up oysters canned, fresh and raw in many grocery stores.



Tuna is a healthy source of omega-3 fatty acids, another type of fat that’s good for your health. It's also high in protein, zinc and selenium—all essential nutrients for your immune system to function.


You can incorporate tuna into your diet in a lot of different ways. Sear it on the grill, bake it in the oven or buy it in a can to put in a sandwich.



Yogurt can be a breakfast that gives you and your immune system a solid start to your day. It’s one of the best sources of probiotics, which is also good for your dietary health. It also contains protein, vitamin A and zinc.


Just remember to choose plain, unsweetened yogurt to keep the sugar content down. You can add nuts and berries to boost its nutrition too.


Did you know FEP members can get rewarded for reaching their health goals, including eating better? With the Online Health Coach, members can receive $40 for each eligible goal completed, up to three, for $120 total.*


*You must be the contract holder or spouse, 18 or older, on a Standard or Basic Option plan to earn incentive rewards.





Published on: December 13, 2022