Food is the last thing on our minds when our body is fighting malaise caused by the flu. But eating is essential to combat the adverse effects of the disease. So, what to eat when you have the flu and no appetite? A common problem for most people is losing appetite when you or your loved one is under the weather. If you are one of them, you should read on and learn about foods and drinks for flu that will go down quickly, soothe your symptoms, and boost your immunity.
Top Foods to Eat When You Have The Flu
Even though food is not something that will make the flu go away on its own, you can use it to your advantage to keep the flu-related misery away. With a proper diet, you can surely recover faster and fight the viruses better.
1. Chilies For Bringing Back Appetite
One of the biggest reasons for losing interest in food when you are sick is that it doesn’t taste the same as it used to. Spicy foods have a kick in them which helps break nasal congestion and facilitates easy breathing. In turn, this helps get your taste buds working, and the real taste of food starts coming back. Thus, to get your appetite back, there is nothing like hot and spicy chilies.
2. Coconut Water For Hydration
Hydration is vital in eliminating toxins and flushing out the viral load. You can add coconut water or any flavored electrolyte-rich beverage to your diet to replenish minerals like potassium and sodium.
3. Yogurt for the immune system
Your gut houses around 70% of your immune system, so feeding the good bacteria in your stomach is a way to get healthy sooner. Yogurt has probiotics that maintain the balance of good bacteria in our guts and is a much-needed food to eat for stomach flu.
4. Green Tea For Antioxidants
Green tea not just hydrates your body but also provides it with rich antioxidants for fighting free radicals. The upper respiratory system is affected during flu, and having hot green tea with some honey will open up your airways.
5. Garlic To Kill Pathogens
Though garlic is mostly a flavoring agent, you could benefit immensely from the anti-fungal properties that garlic possesses. Garlic is known for protecting against all sorts of other infections, like bacteria and viruses. Raw garlic helps reduce flu symptoms immensely, and it should also be added as an ingredient in your foods for flu.
6. Lemons And Oranges For Vitamin C
Vitamin C is the holy grail for immunity and is best absorbed from foods rich in vitamin C, like oranges, lemons, strawberries, tomatoes, etc. So consider snacking up on these foods that are more beneficial than popping in Vitamin C as a supplement.
7. Walnut to Load up Essential Vitamins
Walnuts are high on many vital nutrients which support a healthy immune system. It has vitamin E and vitamin B6 along with copper. It also contains Omega 3s, which will surely reduce the inflammation in your body caused by the flu.
8. Bone Broth For Amino Acids
You need all the additional sources of stacking up all sorts of nutrients in your body, and amino acids are another crucial part of your body. Besides hydration and soothing a sore throat, bone broth is a rich source of a concentrated dose of many vitamins and amino acids. These minerals and vitamins nourish your system to heal it faster. You can top them with anti-inflammatory ingredients like garlic, ginger, or cayenne to make it a wholesome meal.
9. Wild Blueberries For Anthocyanins
Wild blueberries are high in a potent antioxidant called anthocyanins which is also the reason for their striking color. As the name suggests, they are not cultivated and are not usually available in the peak season for flu or cold. In that case, you would need to visit the freezer aisle of your grocery store to buy these antioxidant-rich tiny globules.
10. Peas or Beans For Proteins
If you prefer vegan options and still want to get a good portion of protein in your diet, then peas or beans are your best bets. Especially when sick people might urge to gobble down a chicken breast. Hence, peas or beans are an apt choice for getting those proteins in. You could add them to soups for a warming stew-like meal.
What All Should You Avoid?
If you do not wish to worsen your symptoms, there are certain types of food that you must avoid at all costs. Food that causes inflammation in your body can make your immune system struggle to fight pathogens. Some of the foods that you should stay away from are:
1. Cakes and Cookies
Saturated fats like baked goods (cookies, cakes, etc.), full-fat dairy, red meat, and palm oil can cause inflammation; thus, one should reduce their intake.
2. Packaged Biscuits and Crackers
Foods that contain partially hydrogenated oil are bad for your heart as well as inflammation, so make sure you read the labels before you eat packaged food like biscuits doughnuts, crackers, and pie crusts. Even if the manufacturers say “0 trans fat”, you should refrain from eating them since the permissible 0.5 grams per serving is guaranteed to be present in such processed food.
3. Alcohol and Caffeine
We all know how important it is to be hydrated during any sickness, whether viral or bacterial. Alcoholic beverages (beer, wine, hard liquor) or caffeinated beverages (soda, black tea, coffee) can lead to dehydration which is dangerous for your weak system during an illness.
Keeping your immune system in good condition during the flu is essential, which can easily be done by eating and drinking the right flu-fighting foods. If you do not wish to eat, then there are some healthy choices for drinks for flu in this article which will surely alleviate the flu symptoms and help you recover faster.