Flu Fighting Foods
You are what you eat, right? Then it makes sense that following a healthy diet keeps you healthy, or at least healthier. Especially in this cold time of the year, when someone is sick and sneezing all the time, it’s almost a full-time job to keep yourself healthy.
In my opinion you can’t underestimate the importance of good nutrition when we are talking about our immune system, and how to keep it working most efficient way. I listed here my favorite foods to eat and fight against those runny noses and coughs this winter. The more of them you add on your diet, the more likely you’re going to stay healthy!
Raw Garlic. Maybe the most known flu fighter. Garlic contains compounds called allion and allicin, which can help destroy the flu virus before it becomes a full-blown flu in the body. It also helps promote healthy gut flora, which rids the body of toxins, bacteria and viruses. To get most of the benefits, you should eat it raw, but even if you cook it (add the garlic last into pan), garlic still contains those flu fighting compounds. Also onions contain some of these compounds.
Sweet Potato And Carrots. Excellent sources of Vitamin A, which plays a key role in maintaining the health of your mucosal (inside your nose, gastrointestinal and skin) surfaces. When you keep your mucus membranes healthy, it’s easier for your body to keep infections at bay!
Dark Leafy Greens. Citrus fruits are not the only ones high in cold-fighting vitamin C, dark leafy greens, like spinach, kale, and arugula, are also great sources of it. Studies have shown that if you consistently take in adequate amounts of Vitamin C, it can reduce the duration of a cold. A good rule of thumb is that the darker the greens are, the higher the nutrient content is.
Spices. Some spices such as turmeric, cloves, anise seeds and cinnamon are high in antioxidants, which help improve the function of the immune system and relieve the body of toxins. It has for example been shown that people who consume turmeric on a daily basis, are less susceptible to colds and coughs. A teaspoon of spices every day will already do the magic!
Blueberries. All berries are high in antioxidants to help fight off flu viruses, but blueberries will win this race. You should eat at least one serving (125 ml) of raw blueberries every day to get all their flu-fighting benefits, but if you can’t find fresh berries, turn to the frozen ones. They aren’t as good as eating them fresh, but it’s better option than eating them cooked or skip them completely.
Oily Fish. For example, salmon, mackerel and tuna are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, that help reduce harmful inflammation in your body. A daily intake of omega-3 helps your immune system to work properly, and can prevent colds and flu.
Get A Protein Fix. Studies have shown that low protein diets can deplete the immune system. Make sure to get protein-rich foods (like fish, beans, nuts, eggs and yogurt) throughout the day, every day.