ua en ru

Not fruits and vegetables: These 5 foods to boost your immunity in winter

Not fruits and vegetables: These 5 foods to boost your immunity in winter Illustrative photo (Photo: Freepik)
Author: Daria Shekina

Winter is the season of sweaters, snowflakes, and colds. It's no secret that cold weather brings along numerous sneezes and illnesses, but there are a few little-known food products that can help you get through the season without a cold or the flu, reports Livestrong.

Which foods boost immunity in winter

We all know how important vitamins A and C, D, and zinc are. But they're not only found in vegetables and fruits.


A serving of beef provides over 100% of the necessary daily zinc intake. However, if you're not a meat-eater, some good vegan and vegetarian sources of nutrients include lentils (23% of the daily norm), oysters (76% of the daily norm), and tofu (36% of the daily norm).

Zinc acts as a cofactor or assistant in many chemical reactions that strengthen our immune system.


Canned tuna is actually a fairly good source of vitamin D (10% of the daily norm) with a small amount of zinc (4% of the daily norm). Remember, tuna is a great way to get plenty of powerful nutrients to boost immune function.

Sunflower seeds

Sunflower seeds are an excellent source of zinc (13% of the daily norm) and vitamin E (66% of the daily norm), and they can easily be added to oats, yogurt parfaits, or salads for an extra dose of immune support.


The good old glass of cow's milk actually contains many ingredients that support immunity. It's rich in vitamin D (32% of the daily norm), containing 25% of the daily norm of vitamin A and 16% of the daily norm of zinc, meaning milk is beneficial not only for bone health.

Milk alternatives such as almond or oat milk can also be enriched with these vitamins, but to be sure, check the label.


Fermented products like kefir, kombucha, or sauerkraut contain probiotics that help boost immune function. However, yogurt is a convenient and common source of probiotics, as well as vitamin A (7% of the daily norm) and zinc (13% of the daily norm). This refers to plain yogurt, without additives or sugar.

Earlier, we wrote about whether a higher temperature during illness truly means a better immune system.

Also, read about the 7 products that strengthen health in winter as effectively as supplements.

This material is for informational purposes only and should not be used for medical diagnosis or self-treatment. Our goal is to provide readers with accurate information about symptoms, causes, and methods of detecting diseases. RBС-Ukraine is not responsible for any diagnoses that readers may make based on materials from the resource. We do not recommend self-treatment and advise consulting a doctor in case of any health concerns.