Health & Fitness

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Getty Author: Elle Canada Credits: Getty

Health & Fitness

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

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12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Kefir

Fermented products such as yogurt-lookalike kefir contain probiotics, which help to maintain a balance of good to bad bacteria in our gut, which is linked to immune health. If you're lactose-intolerant, try saukerkraut, kimchee or probiotic supplements.   READ MORE: How Victoria’s Secret models get in shape for their big night

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Sweet potato

The potato's trendier cousin is a delicious source of antioxidant beta-carotene and Vitamin A. Half a cup of mashed sweet potatoes gives women over 190% of their daily recommended Vitamin A intake. “Without Vitamin A, areas like your nostrils, eyelids, lips, mouth and stomach start to weaken and become more vulnerable to the invasion of bacteria and viruses,” says Susan Sommerville, registered nutritionist at Revive Wellness in Edmonton, Alta. READ MORE: 9 athleisure lines that will make you embrace the trend

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Avocado

Healthy fats aren’t the only reason why you should be adding avocados into your diet. This fruit is rich in antioxidant Vitamin E, which is the body’s knight in shining armour. “It protects our cells from free radical damage that may weaken defenses,” says Vanessa Perrone, registered dietitian and owner of Motive Nutrition.   READ MORE: 5 ways to get more mileage out of your fitness tracker

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Salmon

Salmon is one of the best sources of protein. It's a body “building block,” says Sommerville, that we need for healthy skin, nails, muscles and hormone production. It also contains omega 3s, which help to diminish inflammation in the body if derived from sources such as fish and nuts.   READ MORE: Why you’ll never match your mom’s “peak” bod

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Oysters

Among their many benefits (ahem, aphrodisiacs), oysters are replete with zinc, which helps white blood cells reproduce faster thereby boosting antibodies to ward off infection.   READ MORE: 4 personal trainers you need to follow on Instagram

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Pumpkin seeds

Like oysters, pumpkins seeds are full of zinc. Try adding a couple tablespoons to your oatmeal, cereal, yogurt or salad, suggests Sommerville.   READ MORE: How one model is redefining beauty after cancer

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Almonds

Just ¼ cup of almonds will give you over 100 percent of your daily Vitamin E aka cell-protector requirement.   READ MORE: 10 celebrities who are giving us major fitspo

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Raw honey

Consider raw honey – which is chock full of enzymes, minerals and sugars (all of which have antibacterial properties) – nature’s cough syrup. Lianne Phillipson-Webb, registered nutritionist and founder of Sprout Right, recommends either eating off a spoon to soothe a sore throat or dissolving in hot water with crushed garlic and lemon.   READ MORE: 6 steps to finding the perfect sports bra

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Garlic

There’s a reason why vampires look so sickly – they can’t eat garlic! Allicin, found in this flavourful food, is both antibacterial and antiviral, says Phillipson-Webb. “[Eating garlic] could reduce your chance of getting a cold by 70 percent with the added bonus of lowering cholesterol and protecting from certain cancers.”   READ MORE: Celebrity personal trainers share their fave workout playlists

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Chicken noodle soup

Your grandma was right; chicken noodle soup really is a cold cure-all. According to research published in the American Journal of Therapeutics, carnosine (an amino acid found in this soup) can help the helped the immune system fight off the beginnings of flu.   READ MORE: Is THIS the new thigh gap?

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Green tea

We keep a stash of green tea at our desk (mostly so we don’t spend all our money getting Starbucks). But turns out, this brew contains antioxidant compounds polyphenols, which help boost immunity by encouraging the body produce virus-fighting cells. An added bonus? “When you’re drinking tea you’re also hydrating, which is key since dehydration makes you more susceptible to infection,” says Perrone.   READ MORE: Your need-to-know guide to fall running

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter

Immune-boosting superfood: Vitamin D

Okay, it’s not exactly a food, but we need Vitamin D (found in fish, egg yolks, milk) to jack up our immune system. (It helps to stimulate the release of antimicrobial components that could help prevent infection). Since most of us don’t eat enough foods with Vitamin D, Perrone suggests taking a supplement.   READ MORE: 5 Canadian yoga retreats to try now

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada
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Health & Fitness

12 immune-boosting superfoods you need to add to your diet this winter