Having a cold can make you downright miserable, and when you are under the weather, eating might be one of the last things on your mind. But eating the right foods when you are feeling sick doesn’t just give you a bit more energy, but could help you to recover and stay hydrated. Here are some of the best things you can eat.
There’s a reason why your mother gave you chicken soup when you were a sickly child! It’s an amazing source of vitamins, calories, protein, and minerals which your body needs more of when you are unwell. Additionally, the chicken contains an amino acid cysteine which has antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties. There are plenty of recipes out there for chicken soup. This lemon chicken orzo soup has a distinctly Italian flavor to it.
Similar to chicken soup, broths are an excellent source of liquid when you are unwell. For many people, having broths means an extra dose of amino acids and collagen which can make all the difference! You can buy bone broth, but it’s easy enough to make your own and store it in the freezer for the next time you’re sick. The great thing about bone broth is that it’s full of flavor and comes in a variety of nutrients. It’s also easy on your digestive system.
If you are sick, having a dose of electrolytes is crucial. If you’ve been sweating a lot or have a fever, coconut water is great because of the electrolyte balance but it also contains a little bit of sugar which can be a great little source of energy for your body. Even if you don’t have access to coconut water, you could easily make your own electrolyte drink by adding some salt to water and just a tiny bit of sugar or honey to give you some energy.
Many people eat spicy foods when they are unwell because it causes a runny nose. So if you need to unblock your nose, eating spicy foods like curries break up the mucus and clear out your sinuses. But it’s important to remember that if you have a very sensitive stomach, spicy food can cause bloating and pain.
If you can’t taste anything, oatmeal is a very bland but easy-to-eat meal that has plenty of vitamins, minerals, and calories. You can also make your own oatmeal with coconut milk with a bit of peanut butter and jelly for a little bit of sweetness. But if you are concerned about the added sugar but need something sweet, you can add a little bit of honey to it. Honey has antibacterial properties that can help to stimulate the immune system.
When we are unwell the best thing we can do is to rest. Of all the foods to add to your diet to make you feel better, nutrition is important, but remember that this is only one pillar. Keeping hydrated and resting is just as important.