8 Workday Snacks That May Boost Your Immune System   

8 Workday Snacks That May Boost Your Immune System

8 Workday Snacks That May Boost Your Immune System
Clinical Contributors to this story:
Kristi Kosarin, D.O.

When you’re hungry for a snack in the afternoon, do you instinctively reach for a cookie or a bag of chips? Changing the way that you think about snacking may help you eat more healthily and include more nutrients in your diet that may help to boost immunity.

These snacks are easy to bring to work, and they may help to boost your immune health because they’re packed with vitamins, minerals and other nutrients:

  • Berries. Blueberries and blackberries are rich in the antioxidant anthocyanin, which has been shown to strengthen the immune system. Strawberries are high in vitamin C, which may help to boost immunity.
  • Guacamole. Avocados contain healthy fats, and they’re rich in vitamin E and folate, which work to support the immune system. Guacamole comes in single-serve containers, and it pairs well with sliced vegetables like red pepper, broccoli and carrots, which are rich in antioxidants and also help to boost immunity.
  • Hummus. Chickpeas are one of the few plant-based foods containing zinc, which people often reach for in tablet form when they’re coming down with a cold. They’re also rich in vitamin B-6, which helps you stay healthy. Hummus made from chickpeas comes in single-serve containers, like guacamole does, and it also pairs nicely with fresh-cut veggies.
  • Peanut butter. This pantry staple is rich in vitamin E, which helps your body fight infection. Eat it on whole-grain crackers, or spread it on apple slices for a fruity, nutty snack.
  • Dark chocolate. Can chocolate help to improve your health? Research has shown that dark chocolate (not milk or white chocolate) is rich in flavonoids, antioxidants that help the immune system fight inflammation. Choose chocolate that contains at least 70 percent cacao to help boost immunity, and only eat a small serving, because it’s high in fat.
  • Almonds. Like many nuts and seeds, almonds are high in immune-boosting vitamin E. Eat a small handful for a protein-packed snack.
  • Salmon. It’s not a traditional snack food, but salmon is rich in vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which help to support your immune system. If you have leftovers from dinner, consider eating half a serving of salmon at snacktime, or spread canned salmon on whole-grain crackers.
  • Chicken soup. For generations, grandmothers have been offering family members chicken soup whenever they’re feeling rundown. It isn’t research-proven to boost the immune system, but the combination of ingredients – antioxidant-rich vegetables, plus chicken, which contains zinc – may help to keep you healthier. Microwaveable, single-serve containers are easy to pack for work.

Don’t expect dietary changes alone to boost your immune system. To stay healthy:

  • Eat healthy foods, including healthy snacks
  • Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night
  • Exercise at moderate intensity for at least 30 minutes a day
  • Take steps to reduce the amount of stress in your life
  • Quit smoking, if you’re a smoker
  • Wash your hands often

Next Steps & Resources:

The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.


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