As the nights draw in and the weather gets colder, it’s important to make sure you’re getting the right nutrients to help keep illness at bay. You know you should be getting your five a day but which foods are really going to keep you fighting fit? Here’s our rundown of the best ingredients to keep you in tiptop health through the winter months.

Blueberries are high in anti-oxidants, which help to fight off disease and counter ageing. Why not add some to your morning porridge for an extra boost?

Carrots provide immune boosting carotene – don’t forget you can add extra vegetables to your meal with our handy frozen bags.

Brazil nuts – just a few of these wonder nuts each day will give you immune-boosting nutrients vitamin E, selenium and B vitamins.

Beef is a great source of protein, particularly the amino acids needed for a strong immune system. You could also try chicken as a good alternative, or soya beans if you’re a veggie.

Probiotic yoghurt can help to reduce the risk of gut infections and keep your digestive system healthy. Why not enjoy a yoghurt with some fruit as part of your breakfast?

Olive oil is rich in vitamin E, which is crucial for the immune system, as well as healthy mono-unsaturated fats for a strong heart. Try cooking with olive oil when you can.

Pine nuts are a good source of zinc, which help to prevent against infection in the gut and respiratory system. Try sprinkling toasted pine nuts on your pasta dishes or adding them raw to a salad.

Mangoes aren’t just delicious – they are also high in vitamin C and beta-carotene, which help to prevent against cancer and heart disease. Enjoy in a fruit salad or with rice pudding for a warming treat.

Ginger stimulates both the immune system and the circulation, making it the perfect winter ingredient. Great in a warming soup or a stir-fry.

Oily fish is rich in healthy omega-3 fats, which are essential for a strong immune system. Salmon, mackerel and sardines are great examples.You’ll get a good dose of nutrients with these ingredients but don’t forget that it’s important to include a wide range of foods in your diet too – and variety is the spice of life as they say!