Can Food Cure a Cold or Flu?

The best defence to ward off colds and flu is a healthy immune system, and good nutrition is essential for keeping your immune system strong. This is important in cooler weather, when seasonal illnesses like colds and flus are at their peak. Maintaining a well-balanced diet will give you all the essential nutrients you need for a healthy immune system. 

Give your body a fighting chance to ward off common winter bugs by following these tips:

Eat foods rich in protein

Protein is made up of amino acids that help the immune system ward off illnesses such as colds and flus. Include rich sources of protein, like lean red meat, chicken, fish, seafood, eggs, beans and unsalted nuts and seeds.

Eat a wide variety of fruit and vegetables

Fruit and vegetables contain antioxidants and bioflavonoids that can help boost your immune system and fight infections. Aim for at least five servings of vegetables and two servings of fruit a day.

Drink plenty of water

Aim for eight glasses or cups a day. Try warm teas as the weather starts to cool down. Herbal teas are perfect for keeping you hydrated, while black, green, oolong and white teas contain antioxidants and flavonoids, which can help strengthen the body’s immune system.

Don’t skip breakfast

Some studies have shown skipping breakfast may make you more susceptible to illness. A tasty tip is to add frozen summer berries to porridge – the extra antioxidants will help to keep your immune system healthy.

Stay active

Keep active and work out regularly. Studies have shown that regular exercise reduces your number of sick days. But listen to your body and, if you’re not feeling 100 percent, take it easy.

Boost Your Immune System

Make sure you have an adequate intake of the following to help boost your immunity:

Vitamin C

Boosts immunity by stimulating the formation of antibodies that fight infections. Include two servings a day of foods rich in vitamin C, like oranges, kiwi fruit, broccoli and red capsicum.

Vitamin E

Works as an antioxidant and may help to improve immune function. Rich sources include avocado, almonds, spinach and olive oil.

Zinc

Helps the immune system work properly and can also help with wound healing. Zinc can be found in lean red meat, chicken, seafood, dairy products, eggs, whole grains, beans and nuts. 

Garlic

Rich in allicin and sulphuric compounds which can help to stimulate the immune system.

Sadly, there’s no magic cure for a cold or the flu, but keeping your immune system healthy with these immune boosting tips and foods will give your body a fighting chance. 

* Disclaimer: Content originally published on 12WBT.com

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