Your immune system is what keeps you healthy day after day. It protects your body from harmful intruders that can lead to colds or even make you chronically ill.
“The immune system relies on a person’s bloodstream and lymphatic system to deliver nutrients throughout the body to get rid of toxins that can harm the body,” writes Kenneth Abriola, MD. “The best way to keep your immune system strong and keep you healthy, is by living a healthy lifestyle. It was found that 58% of the immune system is almost completely determined by nongenetic factors, and these are tips that you can influence every day!”
The good news: you can take control of your immune health. Ready to get started? We got in touch with a team of health and wellness experts to discover the best foods for boosting immunity. Here’s what they said:
Ginger, scientifically known as Zingiber officinale, is a plant that is most commonly used as an herbal supplement. Scientific studies have proved that ginger has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antitumor, and antiulcer benefits, which make it a common home remedy for several digestive issues.
Due to its strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, ginger is also known to boost immunity health. An easy way to up your intake of ginger is by consuming ginger tea or a ginger-based cold-pressed juice shot in the morning.
Rohan Arora, Founder and CEO, GainingTactics.com
For a daily dose of immune-boosting ginger, look no further than KOR’s Wellness. This is the most ginger-forward shot on our lineup and a great way to activate your day.
Eggs are high in vitamin D, B12, and zinc – three vitamins that go a long way in boosting your overall health.
Vitamin D helps regulate your immune system's response to pathogens. In fact, a vitamin D deficiency is linked to a higher rate of infection.
B12 aids in the production of T-cells, which are fighter cells that attack pathogens when entering the body. It also supports a healthy gut microbiome, which is vital to a strong immune system while boosting immunity.
Zinc is an essential mineral for a strong immune system, because it also helps produce and activate T-cells-a must for boosting immunity.
Natalie Kravat, RD, MS
If you’re vegan or just don’t have time to cook up eggs in the morning, you can still harness the power of immunity-boosting vitamin D and Zinc with KOR’s Intense Defense. This tart, yet spicy passion fruit-based juice shot contains 100% of your daily value of zinc and 235% of your daily vitamin D.
Oats contain selenium and zinc, two important nutrients that aid in infection-fighting. According to this study, the antibacterial powers of beta-glucan (found in oats) are even more powerful in warding off illness than an echinacea supplement!
Carrie Gabriel, Registered Dietitian, Steps 2 Nutrition
Bell peppers, on a weight basis, are one of the top sources of vitamin C (yes, even more than citrus fruits!). As we all already know, vitamin C plays a big role in boosting immune function and is an antioxidant that protects cells from harmful substances. Not to mention, yellow, orange, and red bell peppers are a good source of beta carotene, a known antioxidant.
Holly Klamer, MS, RDN, My Crohn's and Colitis Team
Vitamin C has been a go to remedy for health seekers for centuries for a reason. Embrace this immunity-boosting vitamin with KOR’s Potent-C. This sweet and sunny shot combines orange, pineapple, and sea buckthorn juices with baobab for a splash of good health.
Poor diet can be a cause of poor immune health. When we are not fueling our bodies with adequate nutrients to function properly and effectively, we are slowly allowing our bodies to enter a state of chronic inflammation, which causes compromised immunity.
Probiotic-rich foods provide a lesser known, but highly effective way to promote a healthy, strong immune system by actively repopulating your gut with healthy bacteria.
Probiotic-rich foods include yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, pickles, apple cider vinegar, miso, and kimchi to name a few. You can easily work these ingredients into your favorite probiotic-rich recipes.
A healthy gut keeps the digestive process working smoothly, which prevents free radical and toxin build up in the body, known to lead to many acute and chronic illnesses.
It is also thought that probiotics secrete substances that trigger the immune system to react more strongly, thereby preventing pathogens from being able to take root and cause illness.
Trista Best, MPH, RD, LD, Balance One Supplements
Boost your immune system by optimizing your gut with KOR’s Gut Check. This apple cider based juice shot contains a whopping 1 billion CFU probiotics.
It’s said that the immune system is housed in the gut!
In addition to providing healthy fat to your diet, coconut has natural antifungal properties that can help maintain healthy gut flora.
When our gut bacteria are healthy and in balance, we are able to efficiently and effectively rid our bodies of toxins and impurities that weaken the immune system. This bacteria also keeps the immune response in check by reducing inflammation.
Lisa Richards, Nutritionist, The Candida Diet
Mushrooms boost immunity by modulating the immune system, because they have medicinal compounds, vitamins, nutrients and fiber. Mushrooms contain unique polysaccharides, which are long complex sugar molecules that interact with receptors on immune cells to stimulate their function. The most common of these complex sugar molecules being beta-d-glucans. Beta-glucans have been studied for immune enhancement in many scientific journals and clinical studies. Polysaccharides are just one of many compounds known to benefit the immune system found in mushrooms.
Mushrooms also boost the immune system by providing key nutrients supportive to immune function such as: vitamin D2 (when exposed to UV light), trace minerals (like selenium), and the antioxidants glutathione and ergothioneine.
The immune system gets depressed when overloaded with stress. Glutathione and ergothioneine act as antioxidants at a cellular level, which can prevent free radical stress.
Mushrooms also provide fiber, which can positively impact blood sugar stabilization and the bacterial diversity in our large intestines. This is important, because 70% of our immune system by weight is located in our guts, which is known as the Gut Associated Lymphoid Tissue (GALT).
Dr. Mason Bresett, Naturopathic Doctor, Real Mushrooms
There’s more than one way to boost your immune system, so why not incorporate them all? The experts recommend the ingredients in these KOR shots as a smart way to combat illness every day:
- Wellness: for anti-inflammatory ginger
- Intense Defense: for illness-zapping zinc and vitamin D
- Potent-C: for a vitamin C-rich splash
- Gut Check: for optimizing your gut for better health
Boost your immune system to boost your day with KOR!