Tis the season for dinner parties, holiday-inspired dishes and...(sigh) cold and flu season. While your diet alone isn't enough to keep 100% healthy and virus free, researchers are continuing to find positive links between our immune function and nutrient-dense superfoods. If your patients continue to lose the annual battle to the insidious cold and flu, it's time to start filling up on the immunity-boosting foods that may already be stocked in their kitchen!
What are the Power Foods that Strengthen Immune System Functionality?
The probiotics found in yogurt are proven to naturally fight off disease-causing bacteria and germs that are typically found in the intestinal track. Probiotics can also be found in your daily vitamins, however, consuming a yogurt a day can provide the same benefits and serve as a great mid-morning snack!
Our recommendation: Stoneyfield Farms or Wallaby - both options are organic certified and GMO-free.
#2 Green Tea
Green tea is widely-known for it's rich complex mixtures of polyphenols and potent plant antioxidants that are proven to boost immunity. According to experts at Livestrong, "Sipping on hot tea is not only comforting while you have the flu but also helpful to your immune system, making your symptoms a little more manageable and helping you get over the flu faster."
Our recommendation: Yogi Green Tea Super Antioxidant Anti-Aging formula.
#3 Pumpkin Seeds
This seasonal snack is packed full of zinc, which helps white blood cells fight off the cold and flu. Not to mention, they're delicious and fun to make - add a few dashes of cayenne pepper to alleviate and fight off ailments.
Our recommendation: Spicy Pumpkin Seeds Recipe featured on Simply Recipes.
#4 Button Mushrooms
Loaded with antioxidants, B vitamins and beta glucans that all help to fight off infection; researchers at WebMD even state that "animal studies have also shown mushrooms to have antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-tumor effects." For the best results add to any of your favorite evening dishes for extra flavor and the disease-fighting power the body needs during the winter season.
Our recommendation: Roasted Mushroom and Sunchoke Bisque - via All Recipes.
#5 Sweet Potatoes
One of the most appealing aspects of sweet potatoes is the health benefits available at a low cost. Not only are sweet potatoes rich in vitamin A that fight off free radicles that weaken the immune system but they help to neutralize bad toxins that can form in your body.
Our recommendation: Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes - via Health.com.
Often referred to as a "nutritional powerhouse," kale is packed full with the nutrients your body needs to improve immune system functionality, lower the risk of chronic illnesses and reduce respiratory inflammation.
Our recommendation: Hearty Kale Salad - via Eating Well.
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Article Categories: Food & Nutrition Science