Incorporate shelled seafood into your diet and kiss the flu goodbye. Load up on oysters, lobster, crab, and clams which contain proteins known as cytokines, which help clear flu viruses out of your body.
Nuts and Seeds
Sprinkle nuts and seeds like almonds and sunflower seeds onto your salad or spread almond butter on toast to get the effects of these vitamin E-rich treats. The vitamin E contained in nuts and seeds helps your body fight off viral infections.
They’re good for your eyesight, but that’s not all. Purée carrots into soups or slice them onto salads to gain the benefits of beta-carotene, a compound that helps your body ward off respiratory infections and potentially prevent bronchitis.
Yogurt and Dairy
Good bacteria in yogurt is known as probiotics. Probiotics can strengthen the immune system making it easier to fight off germs you might encounter. Plus, dairy is a source of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which has been shown to boost the immune system’s response to the flu in animals and speed healing time. Research suggests it might have the same effect on humans.
These forest fungi are fabulous at fighting the flu. Mushrooms boost the activity of cells that fight viral infections, making your immune system strong and less illness-prone.
Tomatoes and Oranges
Everyone knows orange juice is packed with good-for-you vitamin C, but did you know that tomato juice is too? The vitamin C found in fruits and vegetables like tomatoes and oranges boosts the body’s immune system, so load up on marinara sauce, caprese salads, and tomato soup. While vitamin C doesn’t prevent colds and upper-respiratory infections, it can reduce the duration and severity.
Green or Black Tea
Tea soothes your soul, but it can help your body too. Various types of tea (mainly green and black) contain powerful antioxidants and the amino acid L-theanine, which can reduce your risk of getting the flu . It does this by prompting T-cells to secrete 10 times more virus-fighting interferon, which experts say may make your body more resistant to the flu.
You’ll probably be having a big bowl of these peas along with greens this New Year’s Day, but don’t wait till then. Incorporate black-eyed-peas into your weekly meals this winter and lower your influenza risk. They’re rich in zinc, which boosts your immune system and keeps it working well.
Chicken Noodle Soup
You might already know this, but it’s not an old wives’ tale. Eating chicken soup, which contains the compound carnosine, in a virus’ early stages and throughout the illness, can help fight off sickness.
Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish like Pacific salmon, increase blood levels of flu-fighting T-cells. Opt for wild salmon if you can, as it contains a lot of vitamin D, which is needed to kill viruses and bacteria.