If you get the flu this year, try eating some of these nourishing foods to heal you up quickly. Certain foods actually help the body heal much faster, and go far beyond your grandma’s healthy chicken soup recipe, or that soup in a can you go to each and every year. I never even get a flu shot, and yet, I prevent the flu year round by eating nourishing foods, taking a probiotic, and getting plenty of rest, with exercise each day. Eat your way to flu prevention this year and be sure to take care of your precious self in the meantime!
Whether it be bone broth or vegetable broth, broth is one of the most nourishing foods you can eat. Since there is no fiber to interfere with the absorption of nutrients, digestion can take a rest and nourishment takes over the wheel. It’s much like juicing, except broth is more friendly to your gut when it’s sensitive, or you’re just needing something warm and soothing. You can make bone broth, or buy a high quality chicken broth, low in sodium preferably, to drink when you’re sick. I prefer drinking a no added sodium, organic vegetable broth, or making my own. Both are very healing and can be just what your body needs in a compromised time like when you get the flu. Drink up to 6 cups a day, and whenever you feel weak or hungry.
2. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are rich in Vitamin A, which is a top immunity booster, especially what your body needs when the cold and flu season hit. Sweet potatoes also contain potassium, an essential mineral and electrolyte your body needs and loves when flu season hits. Sweet potatoes are also rich in fiber, which helps remove excess wastes and toxins from your body in times of illness.
3. Organic, Grass Fed Poultry
I’m not a meat eater, but organic, grass fed poultry has been proven to be very healing to the body, especially in times where you’re sick with the flu. Lean sources of protein, such as chicken and fish help provide the body with essential amino acids that your body needs to heal and repair itself. These amino acids also nourish and restore the immune system as well.
4. Leafy Greens
Leafy greens are one of the easiest forms of vegetables for your body to digest, and they are also one of the most nutritious. Rich in iron, magnesium, VItamin A, Vitamin C and Vitamin K, they are excellent for your immune system. Try using them in a cooked dish like soup if you don’t tolerate them well raw, and eat forms like kale, romaine, collards, spinach and cabbage, which are some of the most nourishing.
Have you heard of kimchi? This is an Asian form of sauerkraut, also known as spicy sauerkraut. It is delicious and rich in natural probiotics, and excellent for boosting your immune system. Add a small serving as a side dish to any lunch or dinner, or top your salad with it. It has a mildly spicy, tangy flavor, and I prefer it to sauerkraut due to its unique flavor profile. When you have the flu, it is important to not only eat healthy foods, but also foods that heal the body, and the probiotics in kimchi help to do that, along with healing garlic, onion and spices used in most kimchi blends. I like King’s brand kimchi which is a high quality, great tasting variety.
Fish provides your body with omega 3 fatty acids, B vitamins, zinc, magnesium, iron and protein. All of these nutrients are essential to a healthy body, but especially a compromised one. Be sure to stick with wild sources of fish, which are lower in mercury than farmed varieties. Try it baked plain if you don’t like a lot of spices, but if you do, some of my favorite ways to flavor it are Italian spices, lemon juice and black pepper.
Berries are rich in antioxidants and can be just what your body needs to fight off invaders that the flu can bring. Stock up on frozen berries since fresh are harder to come by out of season and add them to oatmeal, yogurt, smoothies, or any other way you like.
Along with these other delicious foods, yogurt is another top food to eat to ward off the flu. The probiotics in yogurt are amazing all on their own, but yogurt also offers many other healing nutrients such as vitamin B12, calcium, zinc, folate, iron, Vitamin D, potassium and protein. These nutrients help provide energy, help your immune system function at its peak, help provide your red blood cells and white blood cells with the materials they need to fight off infection, and help ensure nutrient absorption. I prefer organic Greek yogurt for the highest nutrient content, and to avoid excess pesticides, and added hormones in conventional sources of dairy. Just stick with low sugar sources to avoid too much sugar, which is very harmful to your immune system and can make things worse, not better.
Onion is one of the best healing foods you can eat, along with garlic. Both of these are rich in anti-inflammatory nutrients that your immune system craves during the time of the flu. Cook your onions very well to make them easier to digest, and add them to a healthy soup, or make a broth with them. Onions are also rich in quercetin, which is one of the most beneficial antioxidants you can eat, along with Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C.
Getting sick is certainly no fun, but with these delicious healing foods, you can still eat and heal, while also maintaining a nutritious diet. What’s your go to flu remedy food?