It’s January and we’re feeling fresh!

stock-photo-22123988-winter-wonan

 

Well…we will be following these simple steps.

January has arrived, we’re shaking off the last bits of tinsel and indulgence from Decembers festivities, and onwards to a healthy and cold-free start to 2016.

Sometimes you just cannot avoid developing those pesky first signs of a winter cold. This is Britain after all. But we’ve compiled a list of a ten simple foods and drinks to add to normal life which boosts the immune system, and will give you the best chance to beat off those bugs!

1. Oily fish-including salmon, tuna and mackerel-are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, compounds that help reduce harmful inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation prevents your immune system from working properly, and can contribute to colds and flu. Fish oil supplements are said to lower inflammation levels, and also reduce anxiety levels-a condition that itself can weaken immune function.

2. Anise seeds-These liquorice flavoured seeds-which have antibacterial properties-have been shown to ease coughing and help clear congestion from the upper respiratory tract. For cold-fighting, the delivery method is usually in tea. A typical recipe it to add one cup of crushed anise seeds to one cup of hot water, and flavour with cinnamon or honey. Sip this concoction up to three times a day and you’ll feel the health!

3. Yogurt and Kefir-We usually think of bacteria as a bad thing, but some of these microorganisms are essential for good health. Eating probiotic foods, such as yogurt and kefir, is a good way to replenish beneficial strains of bacteria, which promote digestive health and help prevent stomach ailments.

4. Red peppers-Like Citrus fruits, red peppers are high in vitamin C. In fact, one red pepper has 150 milligrams of the nutrient-that’s twice the recommended daily allowance for women.

5. Mushrooms-When it comes to mushrooms, your choices are many: White, button, Portobello Shiitake and Mitake are just a few that you’ll find in your local shop. Fortunately, just about all mushrooms contain some form of immune-boosting antioxidants along with Potassium, B vitamins and fibre.

6. Leafy greens-The darker the greens, the higher the nutrient content. So when your storing up your defences for cold and flu season, choose arugula and kale over iceberg lettuce. Bitter greens like arugula even helps relieve chest congestion, sniffles and coughs.

7. Blueberries-These antioxidant powerhouses are bite-sized immunity boosters, especially when they grow in the wild.

8. Dark chocolate-Pure cocoa contains more of the disease-fighting antioxidants known as polyphenols than most berries-and it’s loaded with zinc to boot. In order to reap the immunity-boosting benefits, without the unhealthy extras, stick with bite-sized portions with a cocoa content of 70% or higher.

9. Brazil nuts– These rich, creamy nuts are high in protein, healthy fats and selenium-a mineral that’s essential for proper immune function and may help guard against infections and flu. Your body only needs a small amount of selenium though-so eat these treats sparingly!

10. Carrots and Sweet potatoes-Orange fruits and vegetables, such as carrots and sweet potatoes, are rich in beta-carotene. When we eat these foods, our bodies convert this organic compound into Vitamin A, which is essential for maintaining a strong immune system.