With winter right around the corner, it’s important to start supporting our immune systems as best as we can. While there are dozens of over the counter supplements claiming to keep you healthy all year long, diet is the first and the best place to look to support a robust immune system.
Let’s take a look at four powerful immune-boosting foods you can add to your diet this winter.
Four Immune-Boosting Foods to Eat This Winter
#1 Garlic: Garlic holds numerous health benefits and is known to help fight off the common cold and flu. Garlic holds so many powerful immune-supporting benefits that it has been found to help modulate the immune system, reduce inflammation, and may even be able to help prevent cancer. (1) If you feel yourself coming down with a cold, try roasting a bulb of garlic and enjoying this in soup, on a slice of gluten-free toast, or if you are brave enough, enjoy it plain. Adding garlic to your diet is one of the best ways to ward off germs this winter and to keep your body healthy all year long.
#2 Manuka Honey: Unlike the honey you find in cute little bear containers sitting on grocery store shelves, Manuka honey contains powerful immune-supporting properties. It is so powerful that hospitals use this honey to help prevent wound infections. Manuka honey can help your body fight off infections, and it’s rich in b-vitamins, and amino acids to help support overall health. However, it is important to know that not all Manuka honey is created equal. The UMF level of honey is what tells you just how powerful it is for your overall health. This stands for the unique Manuka honey factor. It is best to purchase a Manuka honey with a UMF level of at least 10% to achieve the greatest benefit. So, while Manuka honey may be on the pricier side, a little goes a long way and can help keep you healthy throughout cold and flu season.
#3 Turmeric: Nature’s most powerful anti-inflammatory spice will come in handy this time of year. While traditionally known for its ability to ward off inflammation, turmeric is also super powerful when it comes to fighting off infections. Turmeric contains antimicrobial as well as antiviral properties, so adding it to your diet this time of year can help support a strong immune system. (2) One of the best ways to add turmeric to your diet is by making a turmeric milk latte using ground turmeric, a pinch of black pepper, and Manuka honey mixed with warm full-fat unsweetened coconut milk. Try enjoying this each night before bed to stay healthy all winter.
#4 Mushrooms: Medicinal mushrooms like reishi, maitake, and shitake hold very powerful antibacterial as well as antiviral properties making them an excellent addition to your diet this winter. One of the easiest ways to enjoy the benefits of these mushrooms this winter is to purchase a medicinal mushroom tea. These teas are readily available at many different health food stores and can be enjoyed throughout the winter. Add a pinch of cinnamon and sweeten with Manuka honey for added health and immune benefits!
Don’t let cold and flu season drag you down this winter. By adding powerful immune-boosting foods to your diet, you can stay healthy all while supporting overall health. Try adding these four foods to your diet and continue to enjoy them throughout the colder months for optimal immune-supporting benefits.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Rebecca Jacobs N.C is a Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant, specializing in digestive and women's health. She doesn't believe in dieting but rather making lifestyle changes, and believes that healthy eating must be delicious. Rebecca is also a recipe developer and creates healthier alternatives to traditionally unhealthy foods.