Every time I’m down with a cold or feel one coming around the corner, I rely on a few staple natural ingredients to help power me through. My go to foods when I am under the weather are chicken soup and baby spinach salad – both are packed with nutrients and vitamins that will boost the immune system! Before an over the counter prescription can become necessary, I take preventative measures by adding these ingredients into my daily routine to up my immunity and prevent a cold from getting worse. I hope this list helps you – enjoy!
Horseradish contains components called isothiocyanate and sinigrin which provide antioxidant effects and thus strengthen your immune system. It is also a great source of Vitamin C, meeting 41% of your RDA per 100 grams, which works against viral infections. It also contains compounds that help thin mucous and can prevent congestion. I love eating it steamed with any of my dips!
Studies show that echinacea consumption increases white blood cells and spleen – cells that fight invading infections. Other benefits include reducing the incidence of respiratory tract infections and also lower urinary tract infections. You can get it in supplement form, but I love drinking warming this lemon echinacea tea.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar, or ACV, is a powerhouse of gut-friendly probiotics. Unpasteurized ACV contains ‘mother’ – a colony of bacteria that promote gut health and have immune boosting effects. ACV is most effective when taken first thing in the morning – 1 part ACV to 5 parts warm water and 1 tbsp of raw honey. You can shop my favorite one at most anywhere.
Whenever a cold or flu is around the corner, I add drops of oregano oil into my hot water. This oil is one of the most potent oils for its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, protecting you against viruses and infections. Choose one that retains oregano’s natural compounds – I like this brand.
These peppers pack a punch of spice (one of the spiciest foods on the planet!) but also come with a whooping amount of immune boosting Vitamin C – a potent antioxidant. It is especially beneficial for people suffering from sinus infections as it contains a component, capsaicin, which relieves congestion.
Honey is rich in bioactive forms of flavonoids and polyphenols – components which act as antioxidants in the body to fight free radical damage. It also has great antimicrobial properties – Manuka honey has the highest level of antimicrobial activity. It is a natural cough suppressant and packed with nutrients and antioxidants. I love adding a spoonful of this raw Manuka honey to my warm ACV water in the morning!
This powerhouse of a spice is great for everything. Besides adding a flavorful kick to food, it contains a compound called curcumin which blocks enzymes that promote inflammation and also reduces the risk of infections by fighting harmful pathogens. One way to increase turmeric absorption is by taking it with black pepper. Try out these recipes up on my website for delicious meals featuring turmeric!
Colloidal silver works as a natural antibiotic, anti-fungal and antiviral. It enhances recovery from flus and colds by easing sinus infections. While buying it, make sure to buy a high quality one with Bio-Active Silver Hydrosol like this one.