Here’s how to defend against cold and flu season

Ward off a cold

Ginger, sage and thyme: essential oils made from these three herbs have anti-inflammatory properties and help warm the body. Sage tea can help clear out mucus, whereas thyme can help with a stubborn cough. Ginger can reportedly help boost the immune system. Mach’ dich Hertha suggests drinking freshly-brewed herb tea several times throughout the day.

Vitamin C boosters

Lemons, oranges, kiwis and sea buckthorn are all high in Vitamin C, which helps to strengthen and heal the immune system. Lemons, oranges and kiwis taste best fresh-squeezed and juiced. Lemon juice can also be used to replace vinegar in salad dressings.

Bacteria killers

Onions, garlic, leeks and watercress can help hunt down harmful bacteria and neutralize them. These foods are anti-bacterial and help strengthen the immune system. For example, onion juice can help banish a stubborn tickle in your throat, whereas a small bag of chopped up onions can help alleviate earaches. Onions, garlic, leeks and watercress are also healthy options that can be added to salads and soups.

Turn up the heat

Elderberry juice can help ward off flu-like infections. Sweating out the infection can also be highly effective – just fix yourself a hot drink of elderberry juice, make sure your feet are bundled up and warm, and relax.

Chili is another source of heat, and can help stimulate blood flow while also helping to prevent you from catching a cold. The spice works especially well in soups or stews, but is also well-suited to Asian dishes when paired together with ginger and basil, or even lemongrass.

Anti-inflammatory

Both red beets and red cabbage get their violet colour from Polyphenole, which has anti-inflammatory properties. Try them both in a raw vegetable salad!

Immune boosters

The lactic acid bacteria found in thick yogurt, sour cream, buttermilk and ayran can help boost gut health and strengthen the immune system. They taste best when combined with musli, fresh fruit, oats and nuts. We recommend pairing sour cream with roasted vegetables, and adding ayran as a refreshing drink. Kimchi, pickles and sauerkraut also all contain lactic acid bacteria and help strengthen the immune system.

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