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What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

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What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

Sam Milbrath
By Sam Milbrath
October 18, 2018

The cold and flu season is among us and offices teem with germs. So besides washing your hands, getting a good night’s sleep, avoiding stress and staying home if you’re ill, what can you do—or rather, what can you eat—to avoid getting sick?

Back in January, we wrote a blog post on 7 Superfoods That Fight the Cold and Flu Season. We talked about the superpowers of ginger, garlic, lemon, honey, turmeric, apple cider vinegar and homemade chicken noodle soup. Soup aside, these are all fantastic ingredients if you’re making steaming hot teas at work, but a girl’s also gotta eat.

Here are our top cold and flu-fighting meals and the best foods to eat when you’re sick (and ideas of where to order from).

Homemade chicken noodle soup

What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

I don’t know about you, but whenever I’m sick, I want homemade chicken noodle soup and saltine crackers. Not only is chicken noodle soup the ultimate comfort food, but it also has many health benefits. Its warm broth has natural salts and lots of liquid, acting as a natural electrolyte and hydrant. The heat helps clear nasal passageways and soothe an irritated throat. Plus, the broth’s onions, carrots, celery, and chicken are full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and protein—all of which your body needs when it’s fighting something off.

What and where to order:

Warm broths

What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

Some meat eaters swear by bone broths, often drinking a cup of it every morning to maintain a healthy immune system. Bone broth is often made with bone, marrow and connective tissue simmered for hours. Each of these adds essential minerals, omegas, amino acids and vitamins, which are very good for you.

Similar to homemade chicken noodle soup, any kind of warm soup broth—meat or vegetarian—are often full of everything your body needs to stave off a cold or flu. The salty, warming broth flushes your sinuses, warms your body from the inside out and replenishes lost liquids.

What and where to order:

Ginger and garlic dishes

What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

The jury’s out on whether spicy foods are good for you when you’re sick or fighting something. There’s no doubt that they’re great temporary sinus-clearers, though. But spice doesn’t just come from the chili peppers family. So why not try dishes heavy in ginger and garlic? Asian stir-fries are great for this, especially if they’re tossed in leafy greens. Garlic and ginger are ancient superfoods that are packed with antioxidants, antibacterial and digestion-aiding qualities.

What and where to order:

Oatmeal, yogurt, honey, and bananas

What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

Individually, honey, warm oatmeal, yogurt and bananas each bring something to the cold and flu table. Bananas are high in fiber and help soothe upset digestive systems. Raw honey (non-commercial) is a natural cough suppressant and immune-booster. Natural oatmeal (without added sugar) supports a healthy immune system and adds essential calories while you’re sick. Fermented foods like yogurt are often high in probiotics. Yogurt is also protein-, calcium and mineral-rich. Altogether, they’re a workplace breakfast treat.

What and where to order:

Smoothies and natural juices

What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

Depending on what you need, natural smoothies and cold-pressed juices are packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Plus, they’re easy to grab quickly before work and sip on throughout the day. There’s nothing quite like eating the whole fruits, vegetables, yogurts and superfoods on their own, but sometimes a soothing, cool juice and smoothie is just what the doctor ordered.

What and where to order:

Dark green salads and avocado

What to eat when you’re sick— and where to get it

Maintaining a healthy, balanced diet is half the battle during a cold and flu season. Dark, leafy greens like kale, spinach, collards, chard, rocket, and microgreens are so good for you—no matter the season and how you’re feeling. As a rule of thumb, the darker the greens, the more vital nutrients. Raw leafy greens are the best, but a quick satay doesn’t deplete too many nutrients.

Add an avocado for extra vitamins, minerals and calories and added healthy monounsaturated fats. If you’re going for a dark green salad, splash a little extra virgin olive oil for even more healthy fat.

What and where to order:

Sam Milbrath

About Sam

Sam Milbrath is a freelance copywriter and brand marketer. When she isn’t writing for brands or doing her own creative writing, she's exploring, taking photographs, gardening and doing pottery. Check out her work at www.sammilbrath.com

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