Coughing, sneezing, chills and fever. Yes, cold and flu season has arrived leaving many people wondering what they can do to limit the chances of getting sick.
The main objective when avoiding cold and flu is to protect the immune system. If you have a strong immune system, you will be in the best possible position to fight any viral or bacterial infection.
One of the best things you can do for your immune system is to ensure you get enough sleep.
Adequate rest is essential for both your physical and mental health and poor quality sleep will increase your susceptibility to colds.
The negative effects of stress on the body’s immune system are well-documented. Therefore, practicing good stress management skills, such as staying organised and maintaining a support network, is an important step toward increasing wellness.
Studies have also shown that exercising and ensuring you’re drinking enough water make you less likely to suffer colds in the winter months.
Likewise, certain foods can provide the perfect dose of the vitamins and nutrients you need to defend against illness during winter months. Nutrients that help support immunity include Vitamin A, C, D, E, B6, and B12, folate, zinc, iron, selenium and copper.
Top flu fighting foods include fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds, foods with a low glycaemic index, mushrooms, dairy, green tea, lean meats, spices, garlic, ginger, herbs and turmeric.
Flu Fighting Recipes
Drinking a soothing hot drink like ginger, lemon and honey, honey with lemon or green tea is a great way to get immune boosting nutrients, such as Vitamin C into the body. These warm drinks are also packed with antioxidants.
We all know chicken soup is good for the soul, but it also contains sodium and potassium, which means it’s great for cold and flu prevention.
Chicken soup will also keep you hydrated, which is essential when fighting illness.
For a powerful dose of immunity boosting Vitamin D, increase your intake of protein rich grilled salmon.
Homemade ABC (almond, brazil, cashew) spread is also high in protein, as well as selenium, unsaturated fats, iron, zinc, potassium and magnesium.
For a cool alternative to tea, why not try an immune boosting veggie juice? A carrot, orange and ginger blend is a delicious way to increase your vitamin intake and make sure you’re drinking enough liquid.