DANCE NUTRITION | Boost Your Immunity

Using Food to Boost Your Immunity

by the Dancing Dietitians at Body Fusion
Sniffle season is well and truly here! Nutrition plays a crucial role in building a healthy immune system. Dancers are even more likely to fall sick due to their high physical activity load, long tiring class schedules and the ongoing stress of performing their best, at not only dance, school but also in life in general! Here are our top scientifically proven immune boosting tips for dancers:
Try some fermented vegetables & dairy foods
Fermented vegetables and dairy products contain living bacteria that boost immune health. How? Well, did you know roughly 70% of your body’s immunity comes from your gut? Building a healthy army of bacteria in your intestine will help you fight off bugs more strongly.
How to eat them:

  • Natural or greek yoghurt with oats for breakfast or as a snack.
  • Add fermented milk drinks (such as Yakult and Kefir) to smoothies.
  • Use tempeh as protein in stir-fries
  • Try starting meals with a bowl of miso
  • Top salads or fried rice with kimchi
  • Serve sauerkraut with roast meat & veg or with scrambled eggs.


Eat lean red meat, oysters & chickpeas
These foods are rich in zinc, a mineral known to be crucial to good immunity. Why? Zinc is needed to create strong white blood cells that detect and fight off pathogens when they enter your body. Zinc is also an antioxidant and can stabilise cell membranes making them less likely to be affected by foreign invaders like germs and bugs.
How to eat them:

  • Try a roast leg of lamb or beef up to 3 times per week and use leftovers on salads or sandwiches for lunch.
  • Oysters served natural or with a dash of salt reduced soy and fresh coriander as an entrée.
  • Add chickpeas to curries or casseroles to give you a dose of zinc as well as fibre.

Eat garlic
Garlic has been used for centuries as an immune booster in numerous cultures. We have a client who eats a clove of raw garlic everyday and he swears he never gets sick! There is some science behind his ritual because garlic’s sulphuric compounds have been seen to reduce bacteria and infection.
How to eat garlic:
If you can manage to slip some raw garlic into your day then that seems to have the biggest immune benefit.

  • Try a warm tea with a little crushed garlic, lemon & honey,
  • Rub some fresh garlic & olive oil onto your toast
  • If that isn’t for you try adding it in curries, casseroles, stir fries or roast vegetables.

Eat at least 5 different coloured vegetables & fruit
The rich variety of micronutrients in fruit and vegetables is what your immune system needs to keep it running in premium condition, think of them like good quality petrol. Some of the stars include Vitamin C, vitamin A, folate and selenium.
How to eat them:

  • Eat two kiwifruit and two mandarins per day – they are both in season now and high in vitamin C.
  • Make a big batch of vegetable soup to start meals or eat for lunch with a crusty wholegrain roll & spread of hummus.
  • Choose three different coloured vegetables to serve at dinner. Stir-fries are a great way to eat the rainbow!


Eat to nourish your body as an act of self love!’

Kat & Ash xx
Body Fusion