Temperatures are dropping, which means we’re headed into the cold and flu season, and it’s time to take some measures to avoid getting sick at work (or anywhere else you might be going). At Zipongo, we believe that eating healthy is one of the most powerful ways to keep the sniffles at bay. Here are a few nutrients and foods that can help.
Selenium is a mineral that occurs naturally in soil, and in many foods. Selenium is essential for our bodies, especially our immune systems. So if your diet is short on selenium, your immune system may not be performing optimally.
Excellent dietary sources of selenium include Brazil nuts, seafood, whole-wheat bread and mushrooms.
Zinc is an essential mineral and a natural antioxidant present in whole foods. You can also get zinc as a dietary supplement. Various research studies have shown that taking zinc during the early stage of a cold or flu may help shorten how long you’re down for the count. Cold symptoms are also less likely to persist beyond seven days of taking zinc supplements.
Excellent dietary sources of zinc include oysters, wheat germ, spinach, dark cocoa and pumpkin seeds.
You’ve probably heard that vitamin C can help prevent upper respiratory illnesses, and it’s true. Studies have shown that consuming vitamin C might reduce the duration of cold. However, since vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin, overconsumption (read: taking a mega-dose supplement) will only result in your body getting rid of the excess via your urine. The best way to get your vitamin C is from whole foods.
Excellent dietary sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits, bell peppers, and broccoli.
Besides consuming these immunity powerhouses, the important steps to avoid getting sick include frequent hand washing and staying hydrated through the colder months. And if you are feeling a little bit under the weather, be sure to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze to help prevent the spread of germs.