Friday, June 9, 2023

The best foods and drinks when you’re sick!

We have all been there. You’re hot, you’re cold, you’re coughing, sneezing, stuffed up, and your body aches all over! Yep, it’s that time of the year again. Cold and flu season! Yes, this is the time of year when all the germs are being spread around and people are catching one illness or another. It may even get to the point where your appetite is reduced and all you want to do is sleep it away. However, this is not the best course of action.

The best foods and drinks when you're sick!

Food can do much more than give you energy, fill you up and just taste delicious! It can help heal the body and even help fight off whatever big you may have contracted. So, what are the best foods and drinks when you’re sick? Let’s find out!

The common cold

What is the common cold?

The common cold is an easily contagious upper respiratory virus that typically affects the nose, throat, and sinuses. People suffering from a cold likely experience coughing, sore throat, runny nose, plugged ears, sinus pressure, headache and may also have a fever.

So, what should you eat?

When you are suffering from a common cold, you may want to avoid dairy products such as milk, yogurt, cheese, and ice cream. Why? Well, dairy products tend to increase the amount of thick phlegm in your throat, causing you to cough more. Though, some people prefer these items as the cold can help soothe pain from a sore throat.

  1. One of the foods that you will undoubtedly be told to have on hand when you’re sick with a cold is chicken noodle (and vegetable) soup! Why? Mostly, because it is a light broth type of soup that is easy to eat. It is unlikely to upset your stomach but, it is likely to help soothe a sore throat, temporarily clear stuffed up sinuses, as well as provide you with protein, vitamins, and minerals that your body is in need of.
  2. Not a fan of chicken noodle soup? Try a different flavor. The key is to stick with broth-based soups as opposed to cream-based soups such as broccoli and cheese soup.
  3. Honey is another great food to eat while sick with a cold. Why? Because it offers antibacterial properties, that are essential when you have a bacterial infection or cold. Honey is also beneficial as a cough suppressant in children older than a year (check with your pediatrician).
  4. Ginger is a magical anti-nausea food! It works miracles and provides much-needed nausea relief for people that have been vomiting, suffering from diarrhea, or other stomach-related illnesses. Also, ginger is often recommended to help soothe morning sickness symptoms in pregnant women (check with your OB-GYN).

What should you drink?

  1. Water is always going to be the number one beverage on any list that is health-related. Why? Because water is simply the best! It provides endless benefits with few risks.
  2. Not a fan of water? Consider trying coconut water, instead. Coconut water is a great hydration alternative to regular water. It contains beneficial glucose and electrolytes that your body may be lacking while fighting off the cold and it is sweet and flavorful to the taste!
  3. Hot tea is a soothing beverage whether you’re sick or not. But, if you’re stuffed up, it can serve as a decongestant, a sore throat soother, and it can be combined with honey to pack an extra punch!
  4. Ginger tea is not only a great tea for digestive problems but it can help ease upset stomach symptoms related to the common cold.
The best foods and drinks when you're sick!

The flu (or influenza virus)

What is the flu?

The influenza virus is an illness that is easily contagious from person to person. It typically causes symptoms related to the nose, throat, and occasionally also affects the lungs. People suffering from the flu likely experience coughing, sneezing, fever, sore throat, body aches, and chills. The flu vaccine is offered each year to help prevent people from contracting the illness, though it is not 100% effective.

So, what should you eat?

In addition to all of the foods listed above, some doctors also recommend:

  1. Ice pops made from fruit juice
  2. Lean proteins such as turkey
  3. Bananas
  4. Whole-grain toast

What should you drink?

In addition to the various drinks listed above, some doctors also recommend:

  1. Vegetable juice (such as tomato)
  2. Meal replacement drinks
The best foods and drinks when you're sick!

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Bailey Woodean
Bailey Woodean
I have been a freelance writer for more than 4 years, a mom for more than 2 years, and a wife for just under a year. I am currently a student in a cooking and catering program with the intention of expanding my knowledge of the culinary business. I then plan to take this knowledge to properly write about and critique restaurants and food. Writing to you from Niagara Falls, NY, thanks for joining me on the ride!


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