A Look at Some Great Winter Food

James Logie

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During the cold months, there is no better time to keep your immune system as strong as it can be.

There are many factors involved with a strong immune system, but there are some great food choices that may give you a hand.

Here we go, in no particular order:

Ginger

Ginger is an easy way to elevate your cooking and drinks.

Ginger is great to add to teas and appears to be anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative. It also may help with things like muscle soreness, nausea, and may improve cardiovascular disorders and gastrointestinal health.

The gingerol in ginger helps give it its medical properties and has been used by humans for thousands of years.

This just scratches the surface of the power of ginger as it is also antibacterial and may help fight off infection.

Citrus Fruits

This may seem obvious, but citrus fruits still look to be a good choice. And it’s not just lemons and oranges, there are a few other options you may have not considered.

Some other great citrus fruit choices include tangerines, limes, grapefruit, and clementines.

Vitamin C is one of the standard choices to combat sickness, as it can help boost your body’s production of white blood cells.

White blood cells such as lymphocytes and phagocytes help protect the body from infection.

Green Tea

Speaking of vitamin C, you can get a decent amount in green tea. If you want to bump things up a bit, go for matcha green tea powder as opposed to regular green tea.

The powder is much more concentrated and has higher amounts of EGCG, which is a type of flavonoid and antioxidant that can boost immunity.

Oregon State University found that one compound found in green tea may have “a powerful ability to increase the number of ‘regulatory T-cells’ that play a key role in immune function…”

There is still a lot that needs to be studied about green tea, but it’s another one of those ingredients we have used for thousands of years.

When you’re buying matcha powder, look for a nice, bright green color from it. If it looks dull and is on the yellowish/browner side, it may not be fresh or very pure.

It’s worth paying more for quality matcha. You only need a half teaspoon each time, so it will last.

There is also culinary matcha powder and ceremonial powder. The ceremonial powder has a bit lighter flavor and is great to drink on its own if you whisk or froth it.

Culinary-grade matcha will have a bolder flavor and works well in lattes and baking.

Spinach

The Popeye staple also looks to be a good immune booster. Spinach has a nice amount of vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin C and E, which are both important immune boosters and antioxidants.

Spinach also contains beta carotene. All of these things add up to give our immune system an upper hand in fighting off infections.

It may be best to eat spinach cooked instead of raw. But you want to gently cook it so it keeps its nutrients.

Garlic

One big component of garlic is the alliin. This is what gives it the ability to boost your immunity. We turn the alliin into allicin when we crush or chew garlic.

There aren’t a ton of human studies with garlic yet, but it has been extensively studied in vitro/in vivo animal models.

Garlic also appears to have anti-inflammatory properties and heart benefits and is another one of those ancient foods we have used for eons.

It appears to not do well with high heat as far as keeping its medicinal properties. If you’re cooking with it, and it goes too brown, or dark — toss it.

The best tip is to crush or finely chop it, and then let it sit for ten minutes before using or cooking with it. This will help preserve more of that immune-boosting goodness.

Key Takeaways

This list is just a small sampling of some great food choices to include in the winter months.

There are other options like blueberries, broccoli, red bell peppers, almonds, and kiwi, just to name a few more.

They’re important at any point during the year, but in the winter, you may appreciate the immune-boosting properties even more.

During the cold months, It’s tougher to get outside, the sun seems non-existent, and it’s hard to stay active when you can’t get your front door open due to snow.

These are easy choices to include each day, but use this article as a jumping-off point to continue building your health and wellness knowledge.

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Personal trainer, podcaster, Amazon best-selling author. Writing about some health, a little marketing, and a whole lot of 1980s.

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