The spread of the flu virus is in full force now, are  you ready? Whether or not you opt for the flu vaccination, there are steps you can take to protect yourself against the virus and strengthen yourself in the event that you should come down with the flu.  

Beyond the common sense care we all need to follow to prevent catchy diseases … don’t sneeze or cough into your hands, don’t touch your face, don’t smoke, moderate alcohol consumption … there are specific nutritional guidelines to strengthen your immune system and heighten your natural defenses against illness. Preventing the flu may be easier than you think! Try adding this immunity-boosters to your menu:

  • Spicy peppers have have a wide array of health benefits, but in flu season they’re a powerhouse.  The recommended daily allowance of vitamin A is between three thousand and five thousand international units. A single chili pepper contains approximately eight thousand International Units! Vitamin A helps red blood cell formation, immune system function, vision health and growth and
  • Almonds are a good source of vitamin E, a disease-fighting antioxidant and is very important during cold and flu season as a preventative measure.
  • Citrus Fruit offers a helpful boost of Vitamin C to help fight against the flu and colds. Essential in tissue repair, immune system enhancement, circulation, brain and mood function, vitamin C is also a great recovery aid.
  • Ginger is an important addition to your nutritional regimen. A strong antioxidant, it also has antimicrobial and antibiotic properties. It contains  anti-inflammatory agents and fights congestion. Have a cup of ginger root tea to ease throat pain and indigestion!
  • Sweet potatoes contain beta carotene, a nutrient that is converted to vitamin A in the body and has been shown to help fight respiratory infections.
  • Garlic contains alliin which acts as a decongestant. It is also believed to act as an antioxidant and destroy free-radicals. It is called “Russian penicillin,” because of its anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-yeast properties.
  • Green tea is another potent immune system booster, anti-viral and anti-bacterial. Drink a couple cups a day, decaffeinated is available if you’re sensitive to caffeine.

Finally, cut out the sugar, it’s a real immunity-buster!