With all the snow and freezing weather that has swept our region, everyone is getting sick. So, what can you do to remedy those runny noses and persistent coughs? Well, here are some ways to eat properly to help your body get back into shape, ASAP.
Small portions, more meals.
Because your appetite decreases when you get sick, it’s best to eat small portions throughout the day rather than large ones. Your body also has less energy and can get overwhelmed quickly if you put too much stress on it, even by eating a large meal. Snacks like dried fruits, nuts and raw veggies throughout the day are good ways to keep your body energized and your tummy full until you’ve regained your health.
Drink lots of fluids.
Orange juice is always the first recommendations people have when suggesting cold fighting foods, but juice actually does more harm than good because of all the sugar it contains. Next time you’re sick, instead of juice, try water, tea and soup. Water flushes your system of all the invaders and keeps you hydrated so that you can fight the mucus (gross, but true) and any other congestion you may be suffering from. Tea has antioxidants to help strengthen your immune system so it can keep fighting the cold and Chicken noodle soup is a great meal substitute when your not too hungry since it keeps you full, soothes sore throats and is actually scientifically proven to be an anti-inflammatory food. Oh, and alcohol doesn’t count as a fluid, it suppresses your immune system, making it more difficult for you to get better.
Be careful with the dairy products.
People say that dairy products increase mucus and congestion if eaten when sick, but some say that there really isn’t a problem with enjoying milk or cheese with a cold. This choice is really up to you. Try eating something with dairy and if you feel fine, or even better (dairy has lots of vitamin D!), then go for it. Eat all the cheese your heart desires.
Eat more protein.
Foods high in protein content are always a great choice to regain strength and good health. Lean meats and protein-rich vegetables help your body produce more white blood cells (the cells that fight the cold), but make sure you stay away from the Chik-Fil-A and McDonalds because fried meats and friend food in general suppress your immune system.
Garlic and ginger are your best friends.
Garlic and ginger both contain immune system strengthening properties. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties (maybe you can add it to the chicken noodle soup for an extra boost) and garlic contains allicin, a compound that can help block infections, as well as lots of antioxidants, vitamins and can help strengthen your heart. Season your foods with these two spices, even when you’re not sick, to help keep that cold away!
Now that you’re a little more informed on ways to keep that annoying cold from overstaying its welcome, the next time you’re sick, stick to these rules and you’ll feel happier and healthier in no time.