Immunity boosters to get you through flu season

Flu is back with a vengeance and COVID is still circling. What can you do to give your immunity a boost during the winter months? Start by putting these 10 ingredients in your shopping trolley. That’s what.

Great on toast as a Sunday brunch or as a snack when you’re watching telly this oily fish is packed with vitamin D and omega-3s. Plus, it’s a great source of protein.  Adding other oily fish such as salmon and tuna to your weekly menu will also keep your immune system in top form.

Pop it on a burger, add it to a roast with all the trimmings, or sprinkle it with feta in a salad. Beetroot can bring its anti-inflammatory properties and rich vitamin C and nitrate content to all kinds of meals. Tinned, bottled, or fresh: it’s all good.

While your friends and family may not thank you for upping your garlic, your body will. It contains an antioxidant which has antibacterial properties. Along with vitamin D it helps stimulate the production of immune cells. So, add it to soups and sauces or throw it in stir-fries and curries during the winter months.

Star of the green superfoods list kale goes well in scrambled eggs, smoothies, soups, or added to a stir-fry. Not a fan of kale? Substitute Popeye’s favourite leafy green vegetable: spinach.

Citrus fruit
Putting oranges and mandarins on high rotation is one way to give our body a shot of vitamin C. Kiwi fruit is another. Rich in fibre and offering double the daily recommended intake of vitamin C they go well sliced on top of muesli, paired with yoghurt, or simply eaten on their own.

Nuts and pepitas
Snacking on raw or unsalted nuts – or adding them to meals – is another good prop for your immune system. Almonds, cashews, and walnuts contain protein, healthy fats, and vitamin E. A small daily handful should do the trick. If you need to steer clear of nuts pepitas – or pumpkin seeds – are a good addition to a side salad or sprinkled instead of croutons on a soup. They are a good source of zinc, which will help keep your immune system functioning well.

Bamboozled by the yoghurt options in the supermarket? Greek yoghurt contains more protein and less sugar than plain yoghurt and it’s full of vitamin B, folate, calcium, and good bacteria. So, drop a dollop on your breakfast, your favourite dessert, or on soup as a substitute for sour cream.

Chicken soup
Chicken soup is often a go-to when you feel a cold or flu coming on. Here’s why: bone broth in the soup has an amino acid that helps to slow the movement of infected cells around the body.

Adding this yellow spice to cooking could help keep you humming, particularly if you throw some black pepper in with it. Curcumin, a compound in turmeric, has both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects and when it’s combined with piperine in black pepper those effects are magnified.

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