10 Immunity-Boosting Foods for the Flu Season

November 3, 2016
10 Immunity Boosting Foods for Flu Season

Between 5 to 20 percent of Americans will contract influenza this season. Of those, about 200,000 will land in the hospital due to complications. To give you and your family a better chance at staying healthy, learn some foods that boost immunity.

  1. Elderberry: An old folk remedy, elderberry is loaded with antioxidants that may help fight against inflammation. Studies suggest elderberry extract may be able to block flu viruses; however, researchers say more studies are needed to confirm any direct benefits.
  2. Button Mushrooms: Rich in niacin and riboflavin, mushrooms can help boost your immune system. They also contain selenium, which may help minimize the severity of flu symptoms.
  3. Oysters: This super food packs a powerful immune-boosting punch, thanks to high levels of zinc, which helps create and activate white blood cells.
  4. Watermelon: The red flesh of water melon is rich in an antioxidant called glutathione, which helps to strengthen the immune system.
  5. Wheat Germ: Loaded with zinc, antioxidants, B vitamins, fiber, protein and healthy fats, wheat germ offers a number of immune-boosting benefits.
  6. Yogurt: Low-sugar yogurt contains probiotics and vitamin D, which may help to reduce the severity of flu symptoms.
  7. Spinach: This super food is abundant with nutrients, including folate, which helps the body generate new cells and repair DNA.
  8. Tea: Black, green and white tea all contain disease-fighting polyphenols and flavonoids.
  9. Sweet Potato: The beta-carotene in sweet potatoes helps to bolster the immune system.
  10. Garlic: Studies suggest that garlic improves immune function due to a heavy concentration of allicin and other sulfur-containing compounds.

The Best Way to Prevent the Flu
While a healthy diet can help boost immune function, it won't necessarily keep you from getting sick. To drastically reduce your risk of contracting influenza, be sure to get a . By causing the body to create antibodies against the most common seasonal flu virus, immunization can prevent you from getting sick, regardless of exposure.

Son kissing mother
I wanted to take a moment to thank you for the attention you gave me last week. My son was started on antibiotics and ear drops. Within 24 hours he began to feel better. The poor kid had been going to school in tears because he was afraid of missing any more days, but feeling (and looking) just awful! He's not been able to even think about lacrosse practice, but thanks to starting him on antibiotics, he was thrilled to return to practice today.
Somers, NY
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