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10 Cold and Flu Beating Foods to Eat

Updated on November 14, 2017

When the winter season starts to roll around, people always worry about contracting colds and the flu. Nobody wants to be taken out of commission with these viral illnesses during the holiday season; however, when this happens, many people wonder what they can do to try and get over their viral infections a little bit quicker. Fortunately, there are a few foods that people can reliably turn to in order to both make themselves feel better and give themselves a boost. In order to quickly conquer any respiratory illness and get back on their feet, take a shot with a few of these foods below.

Chicken Noodle Soup

There is a reason this food has been a mainstay of treatment for numerous viral illnesses. This hot soup has plenty of nutrients that are necessary for giving the body the energy it needs to fight infections. Furthermore, the hot temperature can be helpful for clearing out the sinuses and relieving some of the cough and congestion that are associated with every viral illness. Heat up some classic chicken soup or go with a homemade version in order to feel better while trying to beat these annoying illnesses.


Yogurt is another good option for people who are feeling a little bit down with a viral illness. Make sure to purchase a yogurt that says “live cultures” because these contain good bacteria which can be helpful for fighting off some of the bad bacteria. Furthermore, some of those fruit yogurts have extra vitamins and minerals that are necessary for boosting the immune system and pushing those viruses out of the body.


Oranges, along with orange juice, are another mainstay of treatments for viral illnesses and bacterial infections. Citrus fruits such as oranges are packed with vitamin C. Vitamin C is a necessary requirement for building the healthy immune cells that are needed to fight infections. By regular eating oranges and drinking orange juice, people will give their immune system the necessary building blocks to build white blood cells and fight off infection, such as colds and the flu.


This is a classic spice that is found in numerous dishes. It also gives yellow curry its golden color. This golden color is provided by curcumin, a molecule found in high amounts in turmeric. This ingredient is known to have anti-inflammatory and immune boosting properties which have been confirmed in several different research studies. Try to eat dishes which require this spice to make or simply add it to other dishes to both provide a unique twist on a popular recipe and to provide a helping hand to an immune system which needs it.


Garlic is a powerful spice that is regularly seen in a wide variety of dishes. Many people add garlic to their dishes simply to provide an extra flavor to a dish; however, it also contains a powerful compound called allicin. This is a sulfur-containing compound found in garlic bulbs which can provide anti-tumor and anti-oxidant features which may also fight against infections such as the cold and the flu. For those who love to put garlic in everything, this should be some good news.


Oregano is another popular spice which is found in a wide variety of Greek and Italian dishes. In addition, this flavorful herb has plenty of properties which can be used to fight viral infections. Oregano is one of the most potent anti-oxidant compounds around due to its high amount of phenolic acids. These acids also give it a powerful role in fighting infections. Try to eat more pasta and throw in some extra oregano to get over the flu faster.

Bell Peppers

In addition to citrus fruits, bell peppers also have high amounts of vitamin C. Whether it is green, red, or yellow bell peppers, people may be surprised to learn that these bell peppers are high in vitamin C because they don’t have the same fruity flavor; however, this is the case. Furthermore, vitamin C also plays a role in maintaining healthy skin. This is the first barrier against infection and can provide a significant boost to an immune system in need as well.

Green Tea

The East Asian cultures have been consuming green tea for what seems like forever, and for good reason. Green tea is a drink that is one of the mainstays of antioxidants. These antioxidants are important for making sure that the body is healthy and that the toxins produced by viruses and bacteria are removed from the body. Furthermore, the warm temperature can help to clear the sinuses and help people feel more comfortable as they recover from their viral illnesses.


With the fall season in full swing, people will be happy to know that pumpkins can also provide a significant boost to the immune system. This food is high in vitamin A, which is important for not only eyesight but also for the immune system. With high amounts of vitamin A, the immune systems will be able to properly communicate with each other. It can also help to keep the respiratory system healthy due to the high amounts of beta-carotene in pumpkins.


For a similar reason, carrots are also high in vitamin A and beta-carotene. Carrots can help provide a strong boost to the immune system as well. Try to throw these in with a stir-fry dish or add them to a salad. It could be the difference that the body needs to fight off cold and flu season. Furthermore, the eyes will appreciate the boost in the levels of vitamin A as well.

Ultimately, the foods that people need to turn to should both help with the symptoms of viral illnesses, such as a cough and congestion, as well as boost the immune system. By relying on these two components, people will be able to get over their cold and flu afflictions more quickly.

*Disclaimer: This article pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion about med­i­cine, health, and related sub­jects. The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this article, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical advice. If the reader or any other per­son has a med­ical con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately-licensed physi­cian or other health care worker.

© 2017 Med-Sense Guaranteed Association


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    • justthemessenger profile image

      James C Moore 2 months ago from The Great Midwest

      Yours is a worthy list. Garlic belongs on just about every health food list out there.

    • thebiologyofleah profile image

      Leah Kennedy-Jangraw 2 months ago from Massachusetts

      Thanks for sharing this information. I always go for natural, home remedies first when I am sick. Great advice to boost ones diet with this list of foods.

    • Deborah Demander profile image

      Deborah Demander 2 months ago from First Wyoming, then THE WORLD

      Great article. Some of these foods, I was familiar with, in terms of immunity, but others, such as pumpkin are new to me.

      Thanks for the information.