Winter is a fantastic time to enjoy the weather outside. In addition to lazy mornings and blanket hideouts, this season also brings with it an array of diseases which can be prevented with a healthy immune system. Staying healthy isn’t just about having a shapely body; it is more about having a strong immune system that can defeat invading pathogens. With easy access to an assortment of colorful fruits and vegetables, winter is the perfect time to stock-up on nutritious foods that boost the immune system.
Honey – Popular for its anti-bacterial properties, Honey is known to be highly effective in keeping fever & cold at bay during winter. Consume 1 spoon of honey daily. You can also add a spoonful of honey to 1 cup of warm water/milk to enhance the taste. In addition to safeguarding your immune system, Honey is also known to promote weight loss when used as a natural sweetener.
Citrus Fruits – Load up on Sweet lime, Oranges & Lemons as they are available in abundance during winter. Packed with Vitamin C, Flavonoids, Antioxidants and many more nutrients, Citrus fruits are just what you need to keep up the good health. You can consume it in its natural form or as fresh juices, either ways; you will not only boost your immunity during winters but also control your cholesterol levels.
Leafy greens – You might have heard this several times before but the benefits of Dark green colored, leafy vegetables are quite a lot to be ignored. Fenugreek (Methi), Cabbage (Gobhi), Spinach (Palak), and Lettuce are quite visible in the markets during this season. Pick the freshest looking bunch of these green leafy vegetables and add them to your daily diet in the form of soups, salads, juices and/or curries. Being easily digestible, these healthy veggies are suitable for all age groups and not to forget, they come with plenty of health benefits.
Fish – Winter is that time of the year when Vitamin D deficiency becomes a concern for many. This sunshine vitamin is absolutely essential to keep up the body’s immunity levels. Both Salmon and Mackerel are oily fishes that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids which not only reduces blood pressure and triglyceride levels but also minimize harmful inflammation in the body.
Garlic – In spite of its pungent taste, Garlic has several immunity boosting compounds that play an important role in fighting off many winter ailments including cold & flu. Much-admired for its antibacterial and anti-viral properties, this superfood also contains a special compound called ‘Allicin’ which is known to possess potent medicinal properties. For best results, chew a garlic clove, every 4 to 5 five hours. If the taste is too strong for you, crush a clove and mix it with honey before consuming.
Mushrooms possess potassium, vitamins, fibre and antioxidants that combat common cold and strengthen the immune system