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5 Foods To Boost Your Immune System

It’s that time of year again… the sniffles, sneezes and coughs will soon return. In addition to getting a flu shot and taking preventative measures to protect yourself, you can adjust your diet to fight sickness. Here are some foods to incorporate into your daily diet to help build your immune system and your ability to fight sickness this cold and flu season.

1. Citrus Fruits

At some point, you’ve probably been told to drink orange juice to help recover from a cold. That’s because oranges and other citrus fruits like grapefruit, tangerines, lemons and limes are packed with vitamin C. They increase the production of white blood cells which helps you fight viruses. It is best to incorporate vitamin C enriched foods into your diet now so that if you do get sick, your body can fight the sickness faster.

Insider Scoop: Red bell peppers actually have twice as much vitamin C as citrus fruits.

2. Spinach and Broccoli

These two items are packed with vitamins A, C and E but also provide the body with needed antioxidants. Spinach retains its nutrients best when cooked very little. Try adding fresh spinach to a smoothie or swap out your salad lettuce for this infection-fighting leafy green!

3. Sunflower Seeds

While small, sunflower seeds pack a big punch. With copious amounts of phosphorus, magnesium, vitamin B-6. vitamin E, and antioxidants, these small seeds a great to include in your diet at all times of the year.

4. Green Tea

Green tea is wonderful to drink while you are sick but can also help prevent you from getting sick. Unlike other teas, green tea is steamed (not fermented) so the Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG) is preserved. Whether you drink it hot or cold, this refreshing tea is great for helping fight sickness.

5. Yogurt

Yogurt is a wonderful item to start your day with. The live cultures can help trigger your body to fight diseases and also bad breath! One of our favorite things about this breakfast item is that it can be combined with other sickness-fighting foods like fruit.

Insider Scoop: Almonds are full of vitamin E which can also be beneficial in fighting sickness. Make a smoothie and include yogurt, citrus fruit and almonds for an extra immune system boost this cold and flu season.

The best way to fight getting sick and to protect others around you from getting sick is by getting a flu shot. View our list of upcoming flu clinic happening all over Riverside during October and November. To learn how to protect yourself from getting sick at work, click here.