The arrival of winter means shorter days and colder temperatures, and unluckily, it also means more sick days for some people. In order to limit their exposure to illnesses, some people wash their hands more often, decide to take a multi-vitamin or simply get a flu shot. However, these aren’t the only solutions you have when you don’t want to fall sick during the cold months. There are some simple additions that can be made to your daily diet, which will strengthen your immune system and enable it to keep the germs at bay. Some foods you should include in your winter meals for warding off illnesses are mentioned as follows:
- Berries are great
Berries are in season during the summer and are also immensely popular during this time, but this doesn’t mean that they don’t have health benefits during the winter. Berries are naturally laden with Vitamin C due to which they are highly recommended. You can eat your daily dose of berries simply by adding them to smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, muffins or pancakes.
- Dairy products shouldn’t be forgotten
Another effective way of boosting your immune system is to make yogurt a part of your regular meals. Yogurt is considered to be a good source of zinc, protein and Vitamin A and also comprises of healthy bacteria that can protect your digestive tract for germs that cause diseases. Yogurt can be used in a smoothie or as a fruit dip or can also be eaten as an afternoon snack.
- Sweetness is a must
A bit of honey is exactly what you need for strengthening your immune system this winter. For centuries, honey has been used as an antibiotic and it is extremely helpful in preventing bacterial growth. You can spread honey on a piece of wheat toast or simply add it to your hot tea. You can drizzle it on your oatmeal or add it to plain yogurt.
- Mushrooms are a must-have
You can maintain your health during the cold months by adding mushrooms to steak, stir-fry or even just a salad. They are an excellent source of Vitamin D and yet this immune-system boosting food remains underutilized. As a matter of fact, clinical research has discovered that cancer patients who eat mushrooms before radiation and chemotherapy have an improved immune response.
- Add some spice
Studies have shown that turmeric is beneficial in reducing inflammation, fighting infections and treating digestive problems. This immune-system strengthening food is mostly found as a yellow powder and is an important part of Asian curry dishes. It can also be added to salad dressings, egg salad or to steamed cauliflower.
- Potatoes are also necessary
Don’t get confused. This doesn’t mean regular potatoes. It is the sweet potato that can boost your immune health. They are laden with Vitamin A and C and both these ingredients are helpful in battling viruses and bacteria. Additionally, there are plenty of ways you can incorporate a sweet potato in your meal like French fries or a sweet potato soufflé.