Monday, November 9, 2009

100 Healthy Living Tips - #13 - Eat Flu Fighting Foods

Worried about the H1N1 Flu virus? Whether or not to get a Swine Flu vaccination - if you can even find one - is a very controversial subject and a decision each person must make for their family. Whatever you decide, there is another way to help protect yourself from H1N1, or any other viruses - build up your immunity naturally with healing foods.

In Dave Grotto's book 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life, he offers a great list of every day foods you can eat to help build immunity and avoid illnesses like flu and H1N1.

Here are a few of the flu-fighting foods listed in 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life:
  • Yogurt - Probiotics encourage healthy bacteria in your system, which fights virus and flu. Look for yogurt which lists "live and active cultures" such as Activia or Danactive.
  • Oysters - Contain zinc which is necessary for a healthy immune system. One medium oyster is packed with almost all the zinc needed for a day. Think oyster dressing this Thanksgiving!
  • Fresh Garlic - also one of my first remedies if I feel that tell-tale tickle in my throat. Crush fresh garlic (if you don't have a garlic press, put it in a zip loc bag and crush) and let is sit for several minutes to activate the virus-fighting enzymes. I add it to salsa or put on buttered toast. Garlic contains over 100 sulfuric compounds -- powerful enough to wipe out bacteria and infection. Some studies show that those taking garlic supplements suffer fewer colds but I prefer to get my garlic fresh and powerful. Garlic can also help lower high blood pressure and cholesterol.
  • Dark Chocolate - Isn't it nice to see something so tasty also helps give you a strong immune system so you can avoid the Swine Flu? Make sure your chocolate is at least 72% cocao, which supports T-cells to increase the body's defense against infection.
  • Almonds - I eat a handful of almonds daily as they contain protein and fiber, which are great for maintaining your weight. Almonds help build a strong immune system too because they are a good source of Vitamin E.
  • Sweet potatoes and other orange colored foods contain beta-carotene to help boost your immune system and neutralize disease-causing toxins.
  • Mushrooms - Every time we feel "something coming on" one of the first things I do is buy some shitake mushrooms and make a delicious chicken soup with them. Dr. Andrew Weil recommends shitake and maitake mushrooms as immune boosting foods. In Grotto's book, he recommends all mushroom types because of their antimicrobial type fiber, which helps activate "superhero" cells that seek out and destroy infections.
Although fresh is always best, we also take Vitamin Shoppe's - Mushroom Complex every day as well to help boost our immunity against flu and colds in winter. I love Vitamin Shoppe because for every dollar you spend, you get points during the year. At the end of the year, your points are tallied and you receive a gift certificate to spend the following January.

A healthy immune system also protects your body from other disease like cancer. For more great foods to help protect your family from H1N1, ordinary flu and colds, as well a other viruses, get your own copy of Dave Grotto's book 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life

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