When the weather sends a chill up your spine, your first reaction may to reach for hot comfort food, such as a decadent hot chocolate or creamy pasta. These foods and drinks may temporarily provide relief, but if you are looking to stay warm and healthy during prime cold and flu season, you should be eating nutritious foods that provide warmth.
Stocking up on dark orange vegetables, such as sweet potatoes, carrots, and squash will give your body a dose of beta-carotene, promoting a healthy immune system to defend your body against the cold. Some foods can even help you acclimate to the colder weather. Incorporating foods that grow in colder climates, such as onions and turnips, can prevent your body from going into shock when the temperature finally drops. Using herbs and spices can not only flavor your food, but also give your body the warming glow it is seeking. For example, chai tea contains cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, and cardamom, which help warm the body from the inside out.
When you cannot rely on the temperature to stay warm, you can incorporate these foods and drinks into your diet to keep your body healthy throughout the winter season.