Health & Nutrition

9 Superfoods to Boost Immunity in Kids

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By Apollo 24|7, Published on- 19 October 2022, Updated on - 17 March 2023

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For all parents around the world, the health of their kids is their first and foremost priority. They would do anything to strengthen their children's immunity to protect them against all kinds of diseases.


The fact of the matter is that simply including certain immune system booster foods in their everyday diet can prove quite effective in preventing many health problems. While the daily intake of these foods can significantly help in boosting your kid’s immunity, it is equally important to consult an experienced doctor in case your child gets sick too frequently despite a healthy diet.


Only a qualified healthcare professional can help you make an accurate diagnosis and provide an effective treatment plan.


Top Immunity Boosting Foods for Kids


There are several immunity-boosting foods for kids that can help build up their defence against infections caused by fungi, bacteria, and viruses. Here is a list of some of the top ones.


1. Yoghurt

When it comes to immunity foods for kids, yoghurt should be on the top of your grocery list. Packed with probiotics (also called good bacteria), it improves digestion, gut health and overall well-being. It is a rich source of several essential nutrients like potassium, vitamin D, and calcium. For optimum benefits, give your kids plain, white yoghurt with no added sugar or preservatives. A study found that kids who consumed a yoghurt drink every day had a 19% lower risk of catching cold, strep throat, and ear infections.


2. Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits are most certainly the best immunity booster food out there. Including grapefruits, tangerines, sweet lime, oranges, clementines, and lemons, these fruits are a rich source of vitamin C. The micronutrient plays a huge role in strengthening your immune system. Citrus fruits also contain high levels of potassium, B vitamins, antioxidants, phosphorus, and magnesium.


3. Cruciferous Vegetables

There’s a reason why parents ask their kids to eat green veggies. Also known as cruciferous vegetables, green, leafy veggies like broccoli, kale, spinach, cauliflower, and cabbage are some of the top immunity-boosting foods for kids. These veggies are chock-full of several essential nutrients like vitamins A, C, and K, iron, magnesium, calcium, and potassium. Moreover, they are high in antioxidants, which significantly help in enhancing the immune system function.


4. Lean Meat and Fish

Listed amongst the most effective immune system booster foods, lean meat, poultry, and fish are usually great sources of proteins, which play a vital role in boosting white blood cells. Animal based-foods such as chicken, mutton, fish and seafood can be excellent for improving your overall health. Moreover, while meats offer a large amount of zinc, iron, and vitamin B, seafood and fish are high in omega-3 fatty acids. 

5. Berries

Another one of the best immunity foods for kids is berries, which include blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, and cranberries. These colourful fruits are not just delicious but also loaded with nutrients. Packed with potent antioxidants, this superfood helps in strengthening your child's immune system by combating oxidative stress.


6. Seeds

Any list of immunity-boosting foods for kids will be considered incomplete without seeds. Sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, sesame seeds, and flax seeds are highly nutritious and loaded with vital nutrients like fibre, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, and several other micronutrients and antioxidants. Packed with the power of vitamin E, these seeds not only help in strengthening your kids' immune function but also reduce blood sugar levels, regulate blood cholesterol, and maintain blood pressure.


7. Oats

Oats are not only one of the healthiest grains out there but also amongst the most effective immunity foods for kids. This gluten-free whole grain is a rich source of several important nutrients like fibre, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. It is packed with proteins and promotes your child’s overall health. Not only does it prevent harmful pathogens from entering your kid’s immune system but also enhances digestive health.


8. Eggs

Widely recognised as one of the complete foods, eggs are another one of the top immune system booster foods. Loaded with the goodness of vitamin D, eggs have essential nutrients like vitamins and minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, and antioxidants. It is rich in vitamins A, B12, and D as well as selenium and zinc, all of which are great for strengthening the immune function. Moreover, it provides your kids with the energy they need to stay active all day long.


9. Turmeric

Found in several Ayurveda remedies, turmeric is one of the best immunity-boosting foods for kids. Commonly used as a spice in Indian households, turmeric possesses numerous anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antimicrobial properties. A teaspoon of turmeric mixed with a glass of lukewarm milk every day can do wonders for your kid’s immune system. 


Incorporating the above-mentioned immune system booster foods into your kid’s everyday diet can help build their immunity. However, if they get sick quite frequently despite following a well-balanced diet, it is highly recommended to consult an experienced Apollo doctor.


FAQs About Immunity Boosting Foods for Kids


1 How can I boost my child's immunity?

Besides adding the above-mentioned immune system booster foods in your daily diet, follow the measures mentioned below to boost your child’s immunity:

  • Make sure they get enough sleep
  • Keep their lifestyle active
  • Keep their vaccination up to date
  • Help them lead a stress-free life


2. What are the best vitamins for children's immune systems?

Some of the most important vitamins and minerals for your kid’s immune system include:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Zinc
  • Fibre
  • Selenium


3. How do you know if your child has a weak immune system?

Some of the most common signs of a weak immune system include:

  • Frequent and recurrent bronchitis, pneumonia, sinus infections, meningitis, skin infections, or ear infections
  • Infection and inflammation of internal organs
  • Blood disorders like anaemia or low platelet count
  • Digestive problems like loss of appetite, cramping, nausea, and diarrhoea
  • Autoimmune disorders like lupus, type 1 diabetes, or rheumatoid arthritis
  • Delayed growth and development


4. What can weaken a child's immune system?

Cancer treatment, chemotherapy, and certain medication for preventing organ rejection after transplant can weaken your kid’s immune system temporarily. Additionally, it can be weakened by infections such as mononucleosis (mono), measles, and flu virus.

5. How do you test a child's immune system?

You can get your kid's immune system tested through a blood test. These tests can find out if your child has the necessary levels of infection-fighting proteins (immunoglobulins). They can also measure the health of immune system and blood cells. Moreover, these blood tests can figure out whether or not your child's immune system is responding correctly to foreign invaders like viruses or bacteria.


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