Best foods to help you stay healthy through the winter months

With the emphasis on staying healthy and safe this year, more people are looking for tips to boost their immune system. COVID-19 has brought a lot of changes to our daily lives and one of those being the conscious effort in staying healthy. 

A healthy lifestyle has been proven to help build a strong immune system, which includes:

– Healthy foods 

– Regular exercises 

– Reduced alcohol

– Not smoking 

– Adequate sleep 

– Reduced stress 

On top of a healthy day to day life, you can also look to boosting some of the benefits through nutrition.

While there is no specific food that will prevent the contraction of viruses,  certain foods that are higher in specific vitamins and nutrients can aid in boosting the immune system. Focus on adding these 10 types of foods into your diet:

  1. Cruciferous Vegetables: These are POWERHOUSE veggies that come with a list of beneficial nutrients for our bodies. This includes broccoli, cauliflower, kale, cabbage, bok choy, collard greens, rapini – the list goes on. These veggies include Vitamin A, C, K and Folate, the dark green ones have higher contents of A and C. 
  2. Citrus Fruits: Lemons, oranges, limes and grapefruits are packed with vitamin C . Careful if you’re going for juices as they can be quite high in sugar Aim to get these fruits in their whole format.
  3. Peppers: Green and sweet bell peppers are also high on the vitamin C content
  4. Seeds & Nuts: These guys fill two categories with their great levels of Vitamin D and being high in Vitamin B. These are easy to add in to smoothies and salads, or  on their own as snacks. For some seeds and nuts,  you want to make sure they are either ground or broken when eating them.
  5. Oily Fish: High in your omega’s, but again another Vitamin D super star. It has become clear as we learn more about COVID-19 that Vitamin D is a major player in preventing serious symptoms. 
  6. Spinach and Leafy Greens: These are packed with Vitamin A and  many other nutrients. This fibre rich addition is a great foundation for salads, quickly added to smoothies and many more uses! 
  7. Ginger Root: Most commonly known for its ability to ease stomach upset. Ginger is also a superfood when it comes to immune response. It is anti-inflammatory which aides in fighting off most viruses since inflammation directly affects our bodies immune response.
  8. Turmeric: This is widely known for its bright yellow colour and mainly anti-inflammatory benefits. It has been found that turmeric activates the production of certain cells that are the force of your immune system! Try adding some to your tea, smoothies, or making a turmeric latte.
  9. Whole Grains: These help regulate our digestive process, assisting in a healthy stomach and gut. They also come packed with B vitamins which are crucial for a healthy system but more specifically our energy levels! 
  10. Water:  Saving the best for last! Water! It seems like an obvious part of the equation, but often it is forgotten how important this is.  Adequate water is crucial to our bodies to help eliminate toxins, in cellular function and aids in digestion.!

As you can see with a lot of the foods listed, there are multiple uses and benefits with the main message being eat a variety through your day. What are your go-to remedies through cold/flu season?