Fighting colds and the flu starts with preventing them in the first place. Try these immunity-boosting tips to get your body's defenses in tip-top shape for cold and flu season.
This winter, add buckwheat honey to your medicine cabinet. High in antioxidants and iron, this dark, rich honey is full of immunity-boosting properties. Try taking 1 to 2 teaspoons a day to get you through cold and flu season. You can enjoy buckwheat honey right off the spoon, or add it to a hot drink for a delicious winter treat.
Studies have shown that taking vitamin D supplements may help prevent the flu. Try 1000 IU per day and 2000 IU per day during the darker winter months of winter, December through March.
Used in both ayurvedic and Chinese medicine, turmeric is said to be a powerful disease-fighter. This yellow spice increases levels of a protein that may help the immune system fight off bacteria and viruses. It's also a good source of manganese and potassium, which helps support immunity. As an added bonus, turmeric improves digestion and promotes cardiovascular health. You can take this remedy by mixing 3 teaspoons of turmeric in warm water, or use it to flavor stir-frys, marinades or stews.
What better way to cap off your evening than with a relaxing, disease-fighting cup of tea? Try a type that's a combination of medicinal mushrooms such as shitake, maitake or reishi. Superstars in ancient Chinese medicine, mushrooms are powerhouses that are believed to stop germs from growing inside the body. They also contain selenium, a mineral that boosts the immune system. Enjoy two or more cups in the evening.
More from Doctor Oz