Winter can be great fun, but unfortunately, during wintertime, we are more likely to catch a cold, flu and other infections. With a healthy diet, it is so much easier to stay away from sick leave and enjoy winter to the fullest.
Here are some foods to incorporate to your winter diet.
Garlic has been used for centuries for its antibacterial benefits. It helps to beat flu and viruses and also to lower high blood pressure, high cholesterol and to prevent the growth of Candida overgrowth.
Keep in mind, that garlic is most beneficial when eaten raw! If you want to skip the garlic breath, then just chop it to little pieces and swallow them without chewing.
Blueberries are high in antioxidants called anthocyanins, which are proved to boost the immune system and fight flu, cold and even cancer. In fact, blueberries have one of the highest antioxidant levels of all the fruits and berries.
Antioxidants help immensely to improve cell health and healthful cells are the basis of a strong immune system!
Ginger contains a bioactive chemical compound called gingerol, that is responsible for most of its medical and health benefits. Ginger is high in antioxidants, it can help to reduce nausea; fight gold and flu.
It is worth remembering that antioxidants are most beneficial when you get them straight from the fresh source.
Broccoli is packed with different vitamins and essential nutrients like vitamin E, C, and A. It contains a powerful antioxidant called sulforaphane, which helps to fight flu and it is also proven to prevent and even fight cancer.
Little tip: grow broccoli sprouts, which it is very easy, and two broccoli sprouts have more sulforaphane than the whole fresh broccoli itself.
Cranberries are truly healthful berries, they are high in vitamin C, which is a powerful natural antioxidant and high in vitamin E, which plays an essential part of the immune function.
Nutrients in cranberries are proved to improve immunity, lower blood pressure and fight urinary tract infections. If you do not have them fresh or frozen, then dried, powdered or juiced cranberries are as good!
Like blueberries, spinach is also full of antioxidants called flavonoids. These are compounds that protect plants from ultraviolet radiation and pathogens. Besides flavonoids, this dark leafy green is high in vitamin E and C, which both support the immune system.
So, when you are feeling a bit sick and weak, make an immune boosting smoothie with blueberries, bananas and spinach, add a little citrus and ginger as well.
Curcumin is one of the main active and beneficial compounds of turmeric, it is highly anti-inflammatory, and a very powerful antioxidant.
During winter, warm yourself with turmeric milk, add turmeric to spice up your food or blend it into the smoothie. Furthermore, turmeric gives to your foods and drinks a very beautiful yellow color.
Blackcurrants have four times more vitamin C than oranges! They are real vitamin superstars, besides vitamin C blackcurrants also contain vitamin A, E, and B.
It is proved that these berries have antiseptic, antiviral and anti-inflammatory benefits. My all-time favorite remedy for cold and flu is pure blackcurrant juice.
Lingonberries are real superberries. They might not be as sweet as other berries, but they are definitely something to add to your winter diet. These berries are highly anti-inflammatory and high or chronic inflammation in the body can contribute to many unwanted diseases.
Antioxidants found in lingonberries also help to fight bacterial infections and like cranberries, lingonberries may help to ease urinary tract infections that usually trouble us during colder seasons.
Fermented veggies are packed with beneficial probiotics that balance gut bacteria and therefore improve digestion, bowel health and strengthen immunity.
Healthy gut plays such an important role in maintaining the health of our bodies and mind!
Try to eat at least one or two servings of these foods every day and you are likely to stay fit as a fiddle during wintertime!
Author: Nutritionist Elis Nikolai