Flu and cold? Fight them with food!

It seems like Nature is listening to our body’s needs in the winter. Indeed, the fruit and vegetables that help our respiratory tract stave off the flu and cold grow during the coldest season of the year. Curious? Let’s discover the “anti-flu menu” together.

A diet in line with the season

The first rule applies year-round to all seasons: eating a diet that provides a good balance of vitamins and minerals, based on seasonal products, is the most important “mantra” to strengthen your immunity and defend yourself from sub-zero temperatures that could easily lead to a flu or cold.

A cornucopia of vitamin C!

Whether green, violet or black, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli and savoy cabbage can really be a treasure chest of active principles with remarkable and renowned anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. A high vitamin C content completes their profile as the best possible allies against seasonal illnesses. To avoid dispersing these active principles, all these vegetables should simply be blanched or steamed.

Peppers are here to protect us

Do you often have a runny nose in the winter? Get your glasses out and take a closer look. Red is the winning colour. Vegetables such as radishes, radicchio, pumpkin, carrots, tomatoes but above all peppers are rich in vitamins A and C, which reinvigorate the cells in the mucous membranes – which are our very own barriers against the bacteria that threaten our airways.

Garlic and onion knock out phlegm

Perhaps skip this if you have a date. But if you have a cold, onion and garlic are your best allies against the harsh winter weather. They are high in vitamins and minerals, and have antiseptic properties to get rid of bacteria and help eliminate phlegm.

Hot peppers and herbal teas against the flu

On top of their alleged romantic properties, hot peppers are a natural source of acetylsalicylic acid – an important anti-inflammatory active principles. If that’s too “hard core” for you, you can choose a herbal tea: while not antibacterial, teas made with plants such as rosemary, sage, thyme, marjoram, bay leaf and roots such as ginger are warming, digestive and invigorating.

All you need is 60 milligrams of vitamin C

Did you know 60 milligrams a day of vitamin C are enough to power up your immunity defences against winter illnesses? All you need are 3 servings a day of orange – the fruit that is highest in vitamin C – to pep up your airways. Other citrus fruits, such as lemons and mandarins, as well as kiwis, apples and pears are also great sources of this cure-all. 

Green tea and rosehip for minerals

Green tea is rich in antioxidants too. In the winter, and more importantly when we have the flu, we should always drink enough to constantly replenish our liquids. Specific infusions, such as rosehip tea, offer vitamins, zinc, flavonoids and tannins.

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