Wide angle shot of person in black and white checkered bed with arm raised in the air.

Five Immunity Boosters for Cold & Flu Season

Cold and flu season is upon us, so it can be tricky to stay healthy during the winter months. The best plan for attack? Do as much as you can to boost your immune system to keep viruses and infections from settling in.

Sniff. Cough. Uh oh, you’re not coming down with a cold, are you? Cold and flu season is upon us, so it can be tricky to stay healthy during the winter months. The best plan for attack? Do as much as you can to boost your immune system to keep viruses and infections from settling in.

Where to start? I’ve got five cold and flu hacks to help keep you in fighting shape all season long. Say hello to your new winter wellness essentials:

Marble surface with pale blue tea towel and teacup with lemons.

1. An exhilarating boost

Elixirs, boosters… These terms may sound a little intense, but they’re just concentrated ingredients that deliver serious goodness to your body, to help keep sickness at bay. And trust me – once you try them, you’ll be hooked.

Canadian-made Moonshine Mama’s nourishing, revitalizing turmeric elixirs are one of the best things you can add to your daily wellness regimen. One ounce a day is all it takes of their “Original Turmeric” or “Original Turmeric Lime Elixir” to immediately feel alive and rejuvenated. And their Winter Warrior Elixir features elderberries, a potent cold/flu buster.

And Toronto’s own Village Juicery Booster Shots are wildly popular. It’s no wonder – knock back a few “Immunity Shots” packed with ginger, raw honey, oil of oregano, Echinacea, and lemon, and an oncoming cold doesn’t stand a chance. Already under the weather? A couple of these, and you’ll be back to your robust self in no time.

Blue patterned bowl with pumpkin soup garnished with pumpkin seeds.

2. Bowled over

It doesn’t get much more comforting than a warm bowl of soul-nourishing soup. In addition to being a delicious meal, soup’s immunity boosting ingredients can actually rid you of a cold all together.

Chicken soup has been used since ancient times to clear congestion and relieve other cold and flu symptoms. And bone broth is full on nutrients that your body can absorb with ease.

Of course, vegetarian and vegan options abound. After all, vegetables offer all kinds of rich, healthy goodness (see more details in section 3).

Try these:

  1. Summerhill’s Own Chicken Noodle Soup
  2. Beef Bone Broth
  3. SHM Thai Lemongrass Tom Yum (vegetarian)
  4. An all around good vegetable soup we have
  5. Summerhill’s Own Broths (Fish, Vegetable, or Chicken) – find them in our frozen section

Vitamix blender full of greens with person squeezing lemon juice inside.

3. C, as in “cold-fighter”

Studies show that upping your intake of vitamin C can both reduce the length of a cold as well as its intensity. That doesn’t however, mean you have to chug containers of orange juice or inhale lozenges by the fistful. Phew.

A wide assortment of fruit and vegetables just happen to be vitamin C superfoods, including: red and green peppers, kiwi, strawberries, papaya, broccoli, kale, lemons, parsley – that’s just to start. The list goes on and on…

So pick up SHM Own Leafy Greens Cold Pressed Juice packed with kale and parsley, SHM Kickin’ Kale Salad or Cheesy Kale Chips, riced broccoli or other pre-cut fruit and veg that makes mealtime a breeze – and helps keep your household happy and healthy this winter.

 

“The latest frenzy in the health food world is celery juice, no doubt in large part thanks to an article about it in Vogue last month.”

 

 

Pale wood surface with hand on cup of hot water, lemon and ginger slices.

4. Drink to your health

According to the Mayo Clinic, sipping on warm liquids isn’t just soothing when you’re under the weather; they may “ease congestion” too.

While tea and soup are no doubt your go-tos for hydration, add in some variety – and bonus healing ingredients – with other super sippers such mulled apple cider, hot cocoa, or Four Sigmatic’s Mushroom Coffee packed with chaga mushrooms that helps boost immunity and fight off nasty colds.

 

5. Headliners

Every week it seems, there are foods and ingredients that capture headlines (I’m looking at you, Unicorn Frapp, coffee in a cone, gold-covered everything…). The latest frenzy in the health food world is celery juice, no doubt in large part thanks to an article about it in Vogue last month. Said to help alkalize your body, reduce inflammation, improve gut health, and a host of other issues, the claims have convinced many to switch to the “other” green juice.

Whether you’re #TeamCelery or not, one thing’s for certain – there are certain time-honoured ingredients, not new or exciting enough to nab the top headlines for sure, but proven over centuries to be the best natural remedies for colds and flus. I’m talking about:

Garlic. Don’t wait until you’re sick to stock up on this incredible seasoning – it can help prevent illness all together, so add garlic wherever you can to help keep sniffles and fever at bay.

Ginger– The anti-inflammatory properties of this warming spice can help ease your symptoms.

Honey. Between its antiviral properties and being a natural cough suppressant, honey is a healing powerhouse, not to mention delicious. Be sure to check out our range of phenomenal raw, organic Ontario honey.

 

What are your tried-and-true natural remedies for cold and flu season? Share your tips and tricks in the comments on social.

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Stephanie Dickison

Stephanie Dickison

A journalist with over 20 years experience, specializing in restaurants, chefs, food and drink. In addition to daily articles and features, profiling top chefs and interviewing celebs, as editor and feature writer for Toronto Restaurants, her Open/Closed column is a must-read every Thursday morning for the newest openings, and latest news + events. 

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