There are a lot of things you can do to stave off the symptoms of cold and flu, but there are few things you can do to fight the virus itself. The food you eat is one way to arm your body with everything it needs. Here are a few tips on the best foods with flu-fighting power.
Yogurt – all the probiotics and good bacteria in yogurt act like a boost to your body’s immune system. It can help with inflammation and reduces the duration of your cold. Just be mindful of sugar content in your choice of yogurt. Plain Greek is best.
Oatmeal – oatmeal has tons of beta glucans, which speed up the healing process.
Blueberries – this great-tasting fruit has one of the highest concentrations of antioxidants. Throw a few handfulls on your oatmeal or have them for a snack between meals.
Oranges – packed with Vitamin C, citrus fruit boosts your immunity, along with the help of bell peppers and strawberries, which are also rich in this powerful vitamin.
Bananas – you lose energy and potassium when you’re vomiting from the flu. Eating bananas will help restore this vital mineral.
Antioxidants: These chemicals fight off free radicals, which can be damaging to your cells. Vitamins A, C & E and beta carotenes keep free radicals in check and repair damaged cells.
Probiotics: These are live cultures, or “good” bacteria that help your body digest and fight off “bad” bacteria. They treat the intestines, stopping diarrhea and prevent or reduce severity of cold and flu.
Zinc: This metal found in high protein foods is crucial to the body’s ability to fight disease. It promotes healthy growth, healing and immunity. By activating T cells, it helps regulate immune response and attack infected cells
Dark chocolate – yes, it’s true. Chocolate can be good for you. The darker the better – cocoa at its purest is packed with antioxidants and zinc, both essential for combating a virus.
Spicy food – if you can handle it, the spicier the better. Spice helps clear out the sinuses and break up your mucus. Feeling adventurous? Try a small taste of straight Wasabi to really clear your nasal cavity.
Oysters and Crab – you’re after the zinc found in these delicious sea creatures, whose immunity boosters can reduce the length of your cold if you up your intake in the first 24 hours of your cold.
Oily Fish – fish packed with Omega-3 fatty acids, like tuna and salmon, reduce inflammation, which can prevent your immune system from being in top shape. Plus, the protein helps you build defense cells.
Garlic – good news for lovers of Italian food, but bad news for the breath. Garlic releases antioxidants as it breaks down in the body.
Ginger – long used in Asian remedies, this root is best for aiding in recovery. It’s highly effective in combating nausea and reducing inflammation, clearing out nasal cavities and aiding in digestion. Its bioactive substances are also known to kill bacteria, particularly RSV.
Sweet Potatoes and Carrots – orange fruits have tons of the antioxidant beta carotene, which converts to Vitamin A in our bodies. Vitamin A is core to development of a healthy immune system.
The classics like tea and chicken soup should also be in your survival kit to help manage symptoms while your body fights off that cold and flu virus. Be sure to keep an eye on your temperature with the Kinsa smart thermometer to make sure you’re on the road to recovery.