15 Immune-Boosting Foods To Help You Stay Healthy
You’ve heard it since you were a child, “eat your fruits and vegetables,” and most likely with dismay you ate the brussels sprouts that your parents gave you. While you may not have lived your life adhering to the rules they taught, or what you’ve read about being healthy, now it’s more important than ever to focus on your body and putting the right foods in it.
As we are in the middle of cold and flu season, as well as battling the Coronavirus epidemic your health should become your number one priority. Below we are sharing 15 foods that can help to fight congestion, fatigue, and other annoying cold and flu symptoms. Find out how to incorporate them into your diet in order to ward off your next cold or flu!
While there are no current studies on what helps with the Coronavirus, it is safe to say that the healthier you immune system is, the less likely you are to contract the virus or get invasive symptoms.
15 Immune-Boosting Foods To Help You Stay Healthy
- LEMON. The juice of one medium size lemon provides 50% of daily vitamin C recommended, which can aid in supporting the immune system and boosting seratonin, which can decrease when battling a virus. Add freshly squeezed lemon to warm water first thing in the morning, put it into a jug of water and sip throughout the day or add to salad dressings.
- ORANGES. Also high in vitamin C, oranges can help reduce the severity of symptoms and lower the duration you are sick. Best when eaten fresh versus store bought, as many have added sugar that can increase the length of a cold or flu.
- SPINACH. Boost your immune system with this nutrient rich vegetable that is high in vitamin C and E, as well as calcium and iron. The darker the color of fruit or vegetable, the better chance of warding off any flu or cold. Eat raw in salads, blend into smoothies, or sauté with a dash of olive oil. You can also freeze raw spinach to make it last longer.
- WATER. We lose fluids when sick and staying hydrated helps to reduce the length of time you feel low, as well as replenish any fluid lost during sweating. Aim for 1L of water per day, especially when sick. If you don’t like the taste, brew up teas, add a teaspoon of honey per cup, or add a dash of freshly squeezed lemon for extra health benefits.
- BROCCOLI. High in vitamins C, an E, as well as fiber and calcium, broccoli is a powerhouse vegetable that helps your body to fight off infection. If you don’t have much of an appetite, eat simple foods such as potato, bananas, oranges, and rice, then add steamed, sautéed or roasted broccoli when your digestion feels better.
- CHAMOMILE TEA. Used for centuries to aid in sleep, this can be used daily to help your body rest and recover, one of the most important things if you feel you are getting sick or trying to avoid it.
- GARLIC. This powerful superfood has been used to ward off illnesses, fight infections, and help treat wounds by enhancing immune cell function. Take garlic supplements, slice and sauté into a pan with vegetables, roast in the oven then blend into soups, or juice it raw. (Your partner might not want to be near you, but viruses and symptoms won’t stick around!)
- RAW HONEY. Known for it’s anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, it can also help soothe a sore throat. Add 1 tsp into chamomile tea and sip.
- BERRIES. Rich in flavonoids, a type of antioxidants in blueberries, can help you prevent flu and colds before they even start. One of the most nutrient rich foods available, add to your diet in smoothies, on top of yogurts or oatmeals, or eaten as a snack.
- BROTH. Whether you want vegetable, miso, bone, or chicken broth the choice is yours. The important thing to remember is it helps prevent dehydration and the warmth of the soup or broth can alleviate sore throats and warm the body up if you feel chills.
- BANANA. It’s easy on the digestive system, making it one of the few foods that can be consumed with ease when you’re not feeling well. Bananas are rich in potassium, which needs to be replenished if you have sweats, as well as vitamins C and B6.
- EGGS. High in vitamin D, which is known to help improve immunity, eggs can help prevent a cold when eaten every day. Opt for organic/pastured eggs to ensure the best quality for your body, which helps you to receive more benefits of this food.
- TOMATOES. Rich in a vibrant red color, tomatoes contain lycopene which is essential for the body’s lymphatic system. Also high in vitamin C, they can help increase your body’s immune health.
- OATMEAL. A warm bowl of oatmeal can be just what the doctor ordered when you’re feeling low. Oats are high in vitamin E and contain fiber that helps move everything through the body, helping you avoid both diarrhea and constipation. Buy oatmeal that has oats as the only ingredient.
- GINGER. If your grocery store still has ginger, stock up. It lasts forever and can be grated into salad dressings, stir fries with vegetables, sliced and boiled with water for ginger tea, or juiced for a ginger shot. Ginger is one of the most anti-inflammatory ingredients out there, boosting your immunity by lowering the inflammation caused when you get sick and decreasing feelings of nausea.