It's an old folk remedy. This fruit is loaded with nutrients called antioxidants, and it may help fight inflammation. In some lab studies, an extract from the berries appears to block flu viruses. But scientists caution that more study is needed. You definitely still need to get a yearly flu vaccination!
2. Button Mushrooms
They give you the mineral selenium and the B vitamins riboflavin and niacin. That helps you in several ways. If you’re low on selenium, you may be more likely to get a more severe flu. Riboflavin and niacin play a role in a healthy immune system.
3. Acai Berry
Its dark color is a sign that it's got plenty of nutrients called anthocyanins.
There isn't any research that shows acai is good for any specific condition. But in general, antioxidants from foods are a key part of a healthy lifestyle.
Enjoy these berries in juice or smoothies, or try them dried and mixed with granola.
They've got zinc in them, which appears to have some virus-fighting powers. That's probably because zinc helps create and activate white blood cells involved in the immune response. It also assists your immune system with tasks such as healing wounds.
It's not only refreshing. When it's ripe, it's also got plenty of an antioxidant called glutathione. It strengthens the immune system so it can fight infection.
To get the most glutathione in your watermelon, eat the red pulpy flesh near the rind.
6. Wheat Germ
It's the part of a wheat seed that feeds a baby wheat plant, and it's rich in nutrients. It's a great way to get zinc, antioxidants, and B vitamins.
Wheat germ delivers a good mix of fiber, protein, and some healthy fat. In recipes, you can substitute some of the regular flour with wheat germ.
7. Low-Fat Yogurt
Probiotics, found in yogurt and other fermented products, may ease the severity of colds. Look for labels that say "live and active cultures."
Also look for added vitamin D. Studies show that people with low vitamin D levels may be more likely to get colds or the flu.
You'll find lots of nutrients in this "super food." One of them is folate, which helps your body make new cells and repair DNA. It also boasts fiber, antioxidants such as vitamin C, and more. Eat spinach raw or lightly cooked to get the most benefit.
Feel free to choose white, green, or black. Each delivers disease-fighting polyphenols and flavonoids. These antioxidants seek out cell-damaging free radicals and destroy them. Caffeinated and decaf work equally well.
10. Sweet Potato
Like carrots, sweet potatoes have beta-carotene. In your body that turns into vitamin A, which mops up damaging free radicals.This helps bolster the immune system and may even improve the aging process.
It's easy to find at the grocery store, and it's an immune-boosting basic. You’ll get plenty of nutrients that protect your body from damage. It has vitamins A and C, and the antioxidant glutathione. Add to any dish or top with some low-fat cheese to round out a side dish.
Krawitz, C. BMC Complementary & Alternative Medicine, Feb. 25, 2011.
Steinbrenner, H. Advances in Nutrition, January 2015.
Cleveland Clinic: "35 Power Foods."
Dayong, W. The Journal of Nutrition, June 2007.
Gorton, H. Journal of Manipulative Physiological Therapeutics, October 1999.
Heimer, K. Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, May 2009.
Kim, H. The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 2008.
Smith, T. British Journal of Nutrition, June 2013.
Laaksi, I. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2007.
Medscape CME: "Vitamin C May Be Effective Against Common Cold Primarily in Special Populations."
National Institutes of Health, Office of Dietary Supplements: "Zinc."
Office of Dietary Supplements, National Institutes of Health: "Vitamin E."
Oregon State University, Linus Pauling Institute Research Report: "All About E.”
Karori, S. African Journal of Biotechnology, Oct. 4, 2007.
Fusco, D. Journal of Clinical Interventions in Aging, Sept. 2007.
Drodge, W. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, November 2000.
University of Maryland Medical Center: "Glutamine."
USDA National Nutrient Database: "Nuts, almonds."
Wu, D. The Journal of Nutrition, 2007.
Zakay-Rones, Z. The Journal of International Medical Research, 2004.
THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.