Eat to beat cold and flu season by getting more of these evidence-based immune boosting foods and supplements into your diet!
Essential stay-well strategies:
REST | Immune system takes a hit when we skimp on sleep, leaving our bodies more susceptible to colds.
WASH | Wash hands 20+ seconds with soap and water; alcohol-based hand sanitizer is next best.
STRESS LESS | Chronic stress can wreak havoc on immune system, doubling our odds of catching a cold.
MOVE | Boosts disease-fighting white blood cells, plus effective stress-buster. Aim 30+ minutes daily.
Top Immune-Boosting Foods:
Chicken soup. Shown to help reduce inflammation associated with viruses, plus it’s hydrating, and the warm liquid can help loosen congestion and reduce upper respiratory cold symptoms. It’s likely that the collagen-rich broth plays a key role, so consider adding bone broth to regular chicken soup.
|Tea. Green and white teas are rich in epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a potent antioxidant that has been shown to enhance immune function.|
Zinc. Shellfish is one of the top sources of zinc, which may help reduce the severity of a cold, and clear it up faster.
Brazil nuts. 300 micrograms of selenium daily (what’s in 3 Brazil nuts) can help to strengthen the immune system.
Turmeric. The bright yellow spice is a natural anti-inflammatory, potentially helping to bring relief to symptoms like sore throat and achy joints.
Ginger. Rich in a compound called gingerol that provides its natural heat, ginger can help decrease inflammation, which can help with cold issues like sore throat, nasal congestion and nausea.
3 immunity-boosting supplements
Check with your physician or healthcare professional before beginning any new supplement regime.
|Vitamin C. Most research shows that vitamin C doesn’t prevent us from getting sick but supplementing with 1,000 mg to as much as 8,000 mg of vitamin C may shave a day or two off of the common cold.|
Vitamin D. Low levels of vitamin D are associated with a host of negative health issues, including increased risk of upper respiratory infections. Supplementing with at least 500-1200 IU of vitamin D daily may boost immunity, reduce our risk of the flu and help prevent the common cold.
Elderberry Syrup. A tablespoon of elderberry syrup four times daily may help to reduce flu-like symptoms as well as duration of the flu when taken within 48 hours of initial symptoms.
Makes 1 serving
- ¼ teaspoon elderberry drops, such as Andi Lynn’s PURE Immune Active Drops
- 1 ounce ginger juice
- 1 kombucha shot (e.g. Lil Easy Shots by Big Easy Bucha)
- 1 bag turmeric tea
- 1 bag Traditional Medicinals Throat Coat Tea bags (1 each)
Heat elderberry, ginger juice and kombucha until slightly hot to touch. Add hot water to fill. Add both tea bags, steep, and sip.
Per serving: 15 calories, 0 fat, 0 saturated fat, 0 sodium, 3 grams carbohydrate, 0 fiber, 2 grams sugar (0 added sugar), 0 protein
To catch the full segment on WGNO.com, click here.