Jodi Baretz, Integrative Psychotherapist and Holistic Health Coach
There is no opportune time to get sick; however, it seems like our bodies fall victim to the occasional illness the day before a big presentation or just prior to a well-earned vacation. While a cold or flu cannot be cured overnight, there are plenty of ways to help mitigate the symptoms. We asked Jodi Baretz, an Integrative Psychotherapist and Holistic Health Coach at the Center for Health and Healing in Mount Kisco for her top foods to eat when ill:
1. Citrus: “Fruits such as oranges, lemons, grapefruits, and limes can boost your immune system and have lots of Vitamin C,” says Baretz. “They also contain flavonoids, which may also boost the immune system. Other foods rich in Vitamin C include strawberries, broccoli, and bell peppers.”
2. Broth: “Low sodium, clear broths are great for a stuffy nose and a sore throat,” notes Baretz. “If you’re up for it, chicken and veggies can be filling and add nutrients. Bone broth is becoming popular now and is also very healing to your gut.”
3. Sweet Potatoes: “These vegetables are packed with vitamin A, an immune-boosting nutrient that helps the body produce white blood cells and helps keep mucous membranes healthy,” says Baretz.
4. Garlic and Onions: “Garlic is a natural antibiotic, which can help,” she says. “You can even eat a clove raw if you dare. Onions are great, too! Probiotic rich foods such as yogurt or kefir can also help repopulate the gut with good bacteria, especially if you are taking antibiotics.”
5. Tea and Coconut Water: “It is important to drink plenty of fluids. Green and black teas—with natural honey and lemon, or just hot water—are great for a sore throat and stuffy nose,” recommends Baretz. “They are also rich in antioxidants. Ginger, chamomile, and peppermint teas are great for settling your stomach. Coconut water is great for [replenishing] electrolytes if you become dehydrated.”
So there you have it—six ways to make your week of illness a little less miserable. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should down a gallon of herbal tea or buy out the citrus fruit section of Whole Foods. Patience is your ultimate friend on the road to recovery.