What food is good for COLDS AND FLU




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COLDS AND FLU

FOODS THAT HEAL

  • Citrus fruits
  • Berries
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Chicken soup and other broths
  • Yogurt
  • Wheat germ and wheat bread

    WHO’S AFFECTED

  • Everyone is susceptible, but children younger than 5, adults 65 and older, and pregnant women are at high risk for developing flu related complications
  • People who have chronic medical conditions, such as asthma, heart disease, or HIV/AIDS
  • People with neurological or neuro-developmental conditions, such as muscular dystrophy
  • Colds are characterized by symptoms such as runny nose, cough, and sore throat
    In the winter months, flu (short for influenza) inflicts a similar misery on people, but includes fever and joint and muscle pain
    The complications of flu—especially pneumonia—can be serious, and thousands of North Americans die from flu or its complications each year

    Old School

    Feed a cold, starve a fever—or vice versa

    New Wisdom

    Eat when you're hungry
    Fasting weakens you at a time when you need strength
    Colds and flu are highly contagious respiratory infections that are caused by viruses
    New flu vaccines are produced yearly to protect against the prevailing strains of the virus
    Doctors recommend annual flu shots for everyone over the age of 65, and people of any age who have a circulatory, respiratory, kidney, metabolic, or immune disorders
    People are more vulnerable to colds and flu when their immune systems are depressed
    Preventive steps include avoiding alcohol, getting plenty of rest, and reducing stress levels
    Wash your hands frequently and cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze

    Nutrition Connection

    While there’s no cure for colds or flu, eating properly may help to prevent them, shorten their duration, or make symptoms less severe
    It’s a myth that you should starve either a cold or a flu
    Eating provides essential nutrients that can help your body recuperate
    Here’s how: Get your vitamin C
    There’s no evidence that big doses work to prevent colds, but some studies show that it can shorten them or lessen the symptoms
    Vitamin C is also known to have a slight antihistaminic effect, so drinking more citrus juice or taking a supplement may help reduce nasal symptoms
    Drink lots of fluids
    One of the worst effects of high fever is dehydration
    During a cold or flu, drink a minimum of 8 to 10 glasses of fluids a day in order to replenish lost fluids, keep mucous membranes moist, and loosen phlegm
    Drink water, tea, and broth
    Abstain from alcohol, which dilates small blood vessels makes the sinuses feel stuffed up, and reduces the body’s ability to fight infection
    Have chicken soup
    It’s soothing, easy to digest, and contains cystine, a compound that helps thin the mucus, relieving congestion
    Scientists believe that a 12-oz (355-mL) dose of the soup may reduce inflammation of the lungs
    It is thought that chicken soup slows down the activity of white blood cells that can cause the inflammation
    Eat spicy foods
    Hot peppers, or chiles, contain capsaicin, a substance that can help break up nasal and sinus congestion
    Garlic, turmeric, and other hot spices have a similar effect
    Eat foods rich in zinc
    Zinc is important for a healthy immune system
    Sources include seafood (especially oysters), red meat and poultry, yogurt and other dairy products, wheat germ, wheat bran, and whole grains
    Studies have shown that supplementation in the form of zinc lozenges may help shorten the duration of a cold, but getting more than 40 mg per day over a long period of time can weaken your immune system

    Beyond the Diet

    These guidelines can help you recover fast: Get plenty of rest
    Adequate rest will help your immune system get back on track
    Try over-the-counter medications
    Aspirin, ibuprofen, and decongestants can help ease accompanying fever, pain, or stuffy nose
    Seek professional care
    Most colds and bouts of flu go away by themselves, but see a doctor if you have a cough that produces green, yellow, or bloody phlegm; a severe pain in the face, jaw, or ear; trouble swallowing or breathing; or a fever over 100°F (37
    8°C) that lasts more than 48 hours