There’s no question that the importance of immunity has taken on a new meaning in these uncertain times. Although we can’t control what’s going on, we certainly can control what’s going in to improve our wellbeing and strengthen our health with the right dose of vitamins and minerals, especially in midlife when our immune responses become reduced. If these supplements come in handy and tasty snack form, even better.
Of course, nothing can replace the benefits of a healthy diet, but who doesn’t need a ‘pick me up’ treat once in a while?
According to Mondelez’s 2020 “State of Snacking” report, almost two-thirds (64%) of consumers are now more aware of the snacks their bodies need, and over half (56%) of people are turning to immune-boosting ones to improve their health as bite-sized moments of satisfaction and self-care.
The new immune boosters
Whether balls, bars or gummy bears, the new immuno-snacks are made with the idea of better regulating our immune system. Mostly enriched with Selenium, vitamins C, D and Zinc as well as probiotics, they claim to help the body increase its natural defences.
As reported by J. Walter Thompson Intelligence, expanding their Nature’s Garden range, US-based Cibo Vita launched Probiotic Immune Booster and Probiotic Mega Immune Mix in February. Avida Health is also adding probiotics and a range of other immune-boosting ingredients to their snacks containing Mushroom GuardTM, which is formulated using six types of mushrooms to better regulate immune function.
In the UK, Perkier launched their new line of +Immune plant-based bars and porridge pots in October 2020. Hailed as a UK-first, the +Immune products contain 100% of the recommended daily intake of vitamins C, D and B12, and specifically claim to help the body fight off respiratory infections like COVID-19.
Of course, when it comes to vitamins and minerals, snacks are not all created equal. Most of those ones on the shelves today are packed with supplements synthetically lab produced. This doesn’t sound good, does it? If you want to build resilience in the body against infections and are often on the go it’s better to search for organic snacks enriched with natural ingredients like dark chocolate, coconut, almond, nuts, berries, ginger, pumpkin and chia seeds packed with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, magnesium, iron, protein and fibre.
Are these snacks really effective on our immune system?
According to Harvard Medical Schools experts: “Although some preparations have been found to alter some components of immune function, thus far there is no evidence that they actually bolster immunity to the point where you are better protected against infection and disease. Demonstrating whether a herb — or any substance, for that matter — can enhance immunity is, as yet, a highly complicated matter“.
Whether these immuno-snacks will keep their promises or not, at least they will give you the right dose of energy to face your day.