Chef Dishes Up Tips on Flu-Fighting Foods

Eating healthfully is one step in avoiding the worst of the flu season, and here are a few of the best foods to add to your flu-season diet.

| October 30, 2009

  • Yogurt helps maintain a healthy digestive system.
    Yogurt helps maintain a healthy digestive system.
    Shutterstock/Matka Wariatka
  • Broccoli contains antioxidants that help keep the body healthy.
    Broccoli contains antioxidants that help keep the body healthy.
    Shutterstock/Shane White
  • Garlic tastes great and it helps fight bacteria and infection.
    Garlic tastes great and it helps fight bacteria and infection.
    Shutterstock/Vakhrushev Pavel
  • Mushrooms help increase the activity of white blood cells, which helps keep you healthier.
    Mushrooms help increase the activity of white blood cells, which helps keep you healthier.
    Shutterstock/Stemack
  • Add a red pepper to dinner and help your immune system.
    Add a red pepper to dinner and help your immune system.
    Shutterstock/Sara Kraus Photography
  • Beef contains zinc, which helps boost the immune system.
    Beef contains zinc, which helps boost the immune system.
    Shutterstock/Branislav Senic
  • Sip a cup of tea for its taste and for the polyphenols and antioxidants.
    Sip a cup of tea for its taste and for the polyphenols and antioxidants.
    Shutterstock/Aniad
  • Turmeric is a polyphenol that helps maintain health.
    Turmeric is a polyphenol that helps maintain health.
    Shutterstock/Naka (Kucherenko Olena)
  • Roasted sweet potatoes a perfect side dish, and they add vitamin A to help the immune system.
    Roasted sweet potatoes make a perfect side dish, and they add vitamin A to help the immune system.
    iStockphoto.com/Jack Puccio
  • The selenium in Brazil nuts plays a role in maintaining a healthy immune system.
    The selenium in Brazil nuts plays a role in maintaining a healthy immune system.
    iStockphoto.com/Stuart Burford

  • Yogurt helps maintain a healthy digestive system.
  • Broccoli contains antioxidants that help keep the body healthy.
  • Garlic tastes great and it helps fight bacteria and infection.
  • Mushrooms help increase the activity of white blood cells, which helps keep you healthier.
  • Add a red pepper to dinner and help your immune system.
  • Beef contains zinc, which helps boost the immune system.
  • Sip a cup of tea for its taste and for the polyphenols and antioxidants.
  • Turmeric is a polyphenol that helps maintain health.
  • Roasted sweet potatoes a perfect side dish, and they add vitamin A to help the immune system.
  • The selenium in Brazil nuts plays a role in maintaining a healthy immune system.

Hamilton Township, New Jersey – Each year, as the fall rolls around, people begin bracing for the flu season. And rightfully so. According to the Center for Diseases Control and Prevention, up to 20 percent of the U.S. population gets the flu every year. This results in approximately 200,000 people being hospitalized because of complications, and around 36,000 people dying from flu-related causes each year.

“While it is important to eat healthfully all year, it is especially so during the flu season,” says John Kuropatwa, executive chef of Spigola Ristorante, located in Hamilton Township, New Jersey. “You need all the help you can get, to help avoid getting the flu. Many people do not realize they can help prevent illnesses by boosting their immune system.”

In fact, the American Dietetic Association reports that, while the flu is a viral illness, you can help avoid it by eating healthfully. Specifically, they recommend eating plenty of fruits and vegetables each day, because those foods contain phytonutrients, which can help boost the immune system. When striving to boost your immune system to help resist the flu, keep the following flu-fighting foods in mind:

Yogurt – Probiotics contain live, active cultures. These healthy bacteria help keep your intestinal track free of germs.



Mushrooms help to increase the activity level of white blood cells, which helps keep you healthier.

Garlic helps fight bacteria and infection because of the allicin it contains, which is a powerful and protective compound.






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