10 Foods For Children To Boost Their Immunity This Winter

immunity booster in winter

Imagine your immune system as a team of superheroes within your body.  They’re always on guard, battling baddies like germs and viruses. But just like any superhero, they need the right fuel to stay strong. That’s where these fantastic winter foods come in! ‍So kids, in this article, check out some foods for children that will help you boost your immunity.

The Importance of Boosting Immunity in Winter

During winter, children are more susceptible to colds, flu, and other respiratory illnesses. This is partly due to spending more time indoors, where viruses spread more easily, and partly due to the body’s natural response to cold weather, which can suppress the immune system. Therefore, incorporating winter immune-boosting foods into your child’s diet is a proactive way to enhance their body’s natural defences. Here are some foods and how you can incorporate them to boost your immunity this winter

1. Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and grapefruits are renowned for their high vitamin C content, a key nutrient in boosting the immune system. Vitamin C increases the production of white blood cells, which are crucial for fighting infections. A glass of fresh orange juice or lemon water can be a refreshing way to start the day and give your child a quick immunity boost.

How to Incorporate: Add orange segments to a fruit salad, use lemon juice in homemade dressings, or simply encourage your child to enjoy a fresh, juicy mandarin as a snack. You can also blend these fruits into smoothies or use them to flavour water.

Also Read: Teaching Kids About Citrus Fruits and Vitamin C

2. Berries

Berries, especially blueberries and strawberries, are packed with antioxidants that help strengthen the immune system. These small but mighty fruits contain flavonoids, which have been shown to enhance immune response. Adding berries to yoghurt or cereal can be a delicious and nutritious snack for children.

How to Incorporate: Mix berries into yoghurt, oatmeal, or pancakes for a nutritious breakfast. You can also bake them into muffins or make homemade berry compote as a topping for desserts.

Also Read: 8 Healthiest Berries You Can Eat

3. Green Vegetables

Leafy green vegetables like spinach, kale, and broccoli are not only rich in vitamins A, C, and E but also contain numerous antioxidants and beta-carotene, all of which are known to support immune function. These vegetables can be incorporated into soups, stews, or even smoothies to make them more appealing to kids.

How to Incorporate: Incorporate spinach or kale into smoothies, making them more palatable for kids. Add broccoli to pasta dishes, stir-fries, or serve them as a side with a tasty dip.

4. Yoghurt and Probiotics

Yoghurt, particularly the ones that contain live cultures or probiotics, is beneficial for gut health, which is directly linked to immune health. A healthy gut flora helps to prevent harmful pathogens from entering the body through the digestive tract. You can serve yoghurt with fruits or honey as a tasty immune-boosting treat.

How to Incorporate: Serve yoghurt with a drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of granola. You can also make yoghurt-based smoothies or freeze yoghurt with fruit to make healthy ice lollies.

5. Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds, such as almonds, walnuts, and sunflower seeds, are excellent sources of vitamin E, an antioxidant that plays a key role in maintaining immune health. They are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are known for their anti-inflammatory properties. A small handful of mixed nuts can be a great snack for kids to munch on.

How to Incorporate: Add chopped nuts or seeds to cereal, yoghurt, or salads. Nut butters can be spread on toast or used in smoothies or baking recipes.

Also Read: Discover the Nutritional Benefits of Nuts for Children

6. Poultry and Lean Meats

Chicken and turkey are high in vitamin B-6, which is vital for the formation of new and healthy red blood cells. Stock or broth made from boiling chicken bones contains nutrients helpful for gut healing and immunity. Lean meats like chicken and turkey can be served in a variety of ways, making them a versatile addition to your child’s diet.

How to Incorporate: Prepare homemade chicken soup, turkey sandwiches, or stir-fried chicken with vegetables. Turkey or chicken meatballs are also a kid-friendly option.

7. Fish

Fatty fish, such as salmon and mackerel, are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to reduce inflammation and boost the immune system. Fish is also a good source of vitamin D, which is crucial during the winter months when sunlight exposure is limited.

How to Incorporate: Grill or bake salmon fillets with a child-friendly seasoning. Fish tacos or fishcakes can also be a fun and tasty way to introduce fish into your child’s diet.

8. Whole Grains

Whole grains, like oats and barley, contain beta-glucan, a type of fibre with antimicrobial and antioxidant capabilities, which helps to boost immunity. A warm bowl of oatmeal is not only comforting in winter but also a healthy start to the day.

How to Incorporate: Serve oatmeal for breakfast, use whole grain bread for sandwiches, or prepare barley soups. Whole-grain pasta can also be a good alternative to regular pasta.

9. Sweet Potatoes

Rich in beta carotene, which converts to vitamin A in the body, sweet potatoes play a significant role in immune function. Vitamin A is essential for healthy skin, which is the body’s first line of defence against pathogens.

How to Incorporate: Roast sweet potatoes as a side dish, mash them as an alternative to regular potatoes, or make sweet potato fries. You can also include them in stews and casseroles.

Also Read: Healthy Eating for Kids – Learn About Carbohydrates, Fats, Proteins, Vitamins and Mineral Salts

10. Spices and Herbs

Lastly, don’t underestimate the power of spices and herbs like garlic, ginger, and turmeric. These are known for their anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties and can easily be added to a variety of dishes.

How to Incorporate: Add garlic and ginger to stir-fries or soups. Use turmeric in rice dishes or scrambled eggs. Herbs like basil or thyme can be sprinkled on pizzas or mixed into pasta sauces.

By creatively incorporating these foods into your child’s diet, you can enhance their immune system and prepare them better for the winter season. EuroSchool, recommends a balanced diet to ensure that children stay hydrated and maintain a healthy lifestyle for optimal immune function.

Admission Enquiry