No one likes to get sick over the winter, especially when the whole house goes down. Here are 5 foods that will help keep you & your kids out of the doctor’s office. Garlic: One of the active components is garlic is a compound called alliin. When garlic is crushed or chopped it releases an enzyme called alliinase. Alliinase turns the alliin inside the garlic into something called allicin. This allicin is a highly unstable compound that breaks down to form sulfur containing compounds which are responsible for having a drastic effect on the immune system
Nutrient-dense carrots may help your little one’s eyes, but in the Winter, the beta-carotene rich veggies help boost the body’s white blood cell count to improve the immune system’s fight against colds and viruses. Pack veggies in your kids school snacks.
According to NBCNews.com, the extra bacteria, or probiotics, added to yogurt have been shown to enhance immunity, perhaps by producing more infection-fighting white blood cells or antibodies in the gut. Eat yogurt regularly for its potential immune-boosting and infection-fighting properties.
Fresh Fruit and Vegetables
In some parts of the country, finding fresh fruit and vegetables during the winter months is tough. Before heading over to the frozen food aisle, take a look to see what’s in season. Clementines, which are in season from November through March, are packed with vitamin C and are a good source of fiber and folate. Their compact size makes them perfect for school lunches – and they keep for up to a month in the refrigerator
Greens such as kale, spinach, and Swiss chard are immune-boosting foods that contain high levels of vitamin C, which not only packs a powerful antioxidant punch, it helps fight off infection and regenerate other antioxidants in the body, including vitamin E. They also contain folate, another immune booster.
Citrus fruits are packed with vitamin C. Believed to increase the production of white blood cells, C is essential for fighting off infections. Since your body doesn’t produce or store this vitamin, load up on citrus to help keep your immune system up and running. Supplementation with the vitamin may be helpful, but it’s always best to receive the vitamin from its natural source.
When your immune system needs a boost, vitamin E sometimes loses the spotlight to vitamin C, but both are crucial for a healthy immune system. Vitamin E is fat-soluble, which means fat is needed in order for it to be absorbed properly. You can get almost all of your daily allowance of this vitamin by reaching for a half-cup of almonds.