Tuesday, 15 May 2012

5 Dietary Weapons against Cold and Flu this winter

Sniffles and sneezes are already in full swing wherever you go. Do protect yourself and your family this winter by adding some immunity boosting and flu-fighting ingredients to your diet.

1.      Essential Fatty Acids

Fatty acids, and specifically Omega 3, play an anti-inflammatory role within your diet. Get this immune-nutrient in fatty fish, some seeds and nuts. For example, Pumpkin Seeds (yummy snack) will contain anti-inflammatory oils, antioxidant Vitamin E and has Zinc which is also a flu or infection fighting element.

2.      Preparing the Gut

A large part of our immune system is located in the gut. Therefore, in order to have a strong immunity, we have to keep our intestines healthy. Probiotics (live organisms) will keep the balance between good and bad bacteria and will increase the gut’s ability to fight infections.

Get probiotics in Yogurt, some Buttermilk and Kefir. Other fermented products such as Sauerkraut may also contain some strains of probiotics. Probiotics are available in various forms to take as a supplement.

3.      Fruit and Veggies

This one is no secret. Eating sufficient amount of antioxidant and immune-boosting fruit and vegetables will keep the flu away. Don’t stick to only one fruit or vegetables colour, eating a variety increases your micronutrient intake. Vitamin C, a powerful flu fighter can be found in citrus, green leafy vegetables, tomato, kiwi, guava, strawberry and many more.

4.      Warm it up

Frequently eating and drinking warmer food and drinks will help to maintain your body temperature. Fluctuations in body temperature will make you more vulnerable to catching an infection when it comes along.

Fill up on soups loaded with vegetables and stock up on some teas with anti-oxidant properties for your daily intake.

5.      Add it to the mix

These foods may not be that fun on their own, but each has a wonderful flu-fighting property. Be sure to add these to the mix!

-        Garlic (antimicrobial properties)

-        Turmeric, cinnamon and cloves (antioxidant properties)

-        Ginger Root (scientific evidence is still lacking, but this ingredient has been use safely and effectively against flu and colds for many years)

Eat it on its own, or as part of a dish. Just make sure you get a few of these Top Flu Fighting Foods this winter.

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