Protein is critical to immune function, and inadequate protein can increase the risk of poor results due to infection. Most proteins are also excellent sources of nutrients such as B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, and zinc, which the immune system also needs.
Most Americans consume enough protein. However, if you have a picky eater at home, or are vegetarian or vegan, you need to keep a close eye on protein intake.
Aim for around one gram of protein per pound of body weight, made from high quality, clean animal proteins (grass-fed beef, naturally-raised poultry, or wild-caught fish). Plant-based options like nuts, seeds, beans, or legumes are great, and you can incorporate GM-free soy or tempeh into dishes too.