The 10 Best Foods to Eat When You Are Ill

These foods and drinks can help fight congestion, coughing, and other cold and virus symptoms

Apr 10, 2020

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Many of the foods and herbs we eat have medicinal properties. And when you are sick, eating the right foods can give you strength and help you feel better. Some foods according to Healthline have properties that can even help your body’s immune system fight the illness and help you heal faster.

While this is not a cure for the coronavirus, if you are fighting a virus, cold, or flu, these 10 foods, spices, and drinks could help you feel better. 

Chicken Soup

Chicken soup has long been known as a remedy for the common cold and that is no bubbameister. It’s easy to eat, full of vitamins, minerals, and protein – essential things your body needs – especially when you are ill.  Chicken soup is a natural decongestant that can help clear your sinuses as well as a source of fluids and electrolytes which are necessary to keep you hydrated when you run a fever according to Healthline. Vegetarians and vegans can sip on hot vegetable broth.

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Honey

Honey has really potent antibacterial properties. No wonder the ancient Egyptians used it for wound care. In fact, this golden sweet nectar is full of nutritional and medicinal benefits. In fact, you can lose the Halls and use honey to sooth your throat and help you stop coughing.

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Garlic

Garlic is good for a lot more than killing vampires. It has been used as a medicinal herb throughout history and has antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal effects according to WebMD. A study showed that garlic can also stimulate your immune system and others have found that people who eat garlic get sick less frequently and have fewer sick days than people in the placebo group.

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Hot Tea

Drinking tea is good for you in so many ways. Hot tea, like soup, will also act as a natural decongestant and even if you drink tea with caffeine, it will not dehydrate you the way coffee will. Different herbal teas also have health benefits like echinacea and chamomile. So, sip on tea all day to stay hydrated and feel better.

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Ginger

This herb is best known for its anti-nausea effects so drinking ginger tea or flat ginger ale is a great way to relieve symptoms if you are fighting a stomach bug. This healthy root also is antibacterial, and has anti-inflammatory properties that can help to boost your immune system.

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Bananas

This yellow fruit is a super-food to eat when you are feeling sick. Bananas are full of carbohydrates, potassium, vitamins, nutrients, and are easy to chew and digest. They are part of the BRAT diet (bananas, rice, applesauce, toast) that is recommended for nausea and diarrhea according to Healthline.

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Lemon

This little yellow fruit is one of the healthiest foods you can eat. They have strong anti-inflammatory products and are full of vitamin C. Ascorbic acid, what the vitamin is called, encourages the production of white blood cells called lymphocytes and phagocytes that help fight infections, according to Healthline. Add lemon to water or hot tea to help keep you hydrated. Vitamin C is not a cure for the cold or the coronavirus but it will help you feel better faster.

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Yogurt

Low-fat yogurt is also a great food to eat when you are sick. That’s because they contain very beneficial probiotics that can  help you feel better an average of two days faster and the symptoms are much less severe according to a double blind British study. While some people believe you should avoid eating dairy because it will thicken your mucus but many studies have shown that this is not the case.

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Turmeric

Curcumin, the natural compound in turmeric that gives it its vibrant color is also a terrific anti-inflammatory and can help boost your immune system. Healthline says to combine turmeric with black pepper because it increases bioavailability so just sprinkle the combo into a smoothie or broth. 

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Dark Red Fruits

It is very beneficial to eat fruit when you are sick. Dark colored fruits contain anthocyanins (flavonoids) that have strong anti-inflammatory properties and studies have shown that fruits high in anthocyanins like berries have anti-viral and immune-boosting properties.

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BONNIE RIVA RAS, EDITOR & WRITER
Bonnie Riva Ras has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.