Fighting colds and flu with food

I'm pretty good at getting through the cold and flu season without being wiped out. I'm not sure if it's because I'm pregnant or because the weather is so miserable this year, but this week I was really suffering with a yucky cold.
Being pregnant there isn't much I can take to treat colds from the pharmacy, so I started to look into foods that could help cure my cold.

Foods that help fight colds and flu

  1. Blueberries- all fresh fruit and veg is good for a cold but blueberries have rhe highest concentration of flu fighting oxidants- they are also a good source of vitamin c.
  2. Yoghurt- probiotic yoghurt help promote the good bacteria in your body and is well known for its disease and virus prevention.
  3. Black tea- has many of the same benefits health wise as green tea, including its tannins which boost the immune system, and have been shown in studies to help fight influenza.
  4. Honey-  Raw local honey is known for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. A recent study also found that treating a cold with honey reduced the amount of time you spend feeling ill by two days 
  5. Dark Chocolate- did you know proper dark chocolate contains more antioxidants than fruit juice. It also contains theobromine, a  chemical that can help fight off the common cold.

Foods that make a cold or flu worse

  1. Fruit juice- it sounds like a good idea but actually the sugar rush from fruit juice is followed by a crash, where you will feel worse.
  2. Junk food- processed sugary food sends your body and immune system into shutdown mode. Your body stops fighting the cold and solely works on processing the food. So it's best avoided when suffering with a cold.
  3. Dairy- is reported to produce more phlegm, not something you want when you have a cold. Plus dairy is a common allergy that most people don't realise they have. It causes IBS and is complex for your body to process. It's probably best then to give dairy a miss when you are under the weather. Try Goat milk instead, it's much closer to human milk, making it easier for our bodies to process.

Other holistic cold remedies

  1. Drink extra water- double your normally intake if you can, water helps keep you hydrated and flushes toxins out of your body.
  2. Eucalyptus oil- on a napkin or clothes can help you breathing clear.
  3. Steam up - in a hot bath or a shower to help clear congestion
  4. Rest- take the day off everything you can. Don't do the housework, give play groups a miss. A days rest will do your body so much good.
I hope my tips help anyone else with a cold or flu better. They certainly worked for me. I went from feeling awfully nauseous, bungled up and not being able to sleep one night to a nice full nights sleep the next. I woke up feeling back to normal (with a slightly stuffy nose) without using any over the counter cold remedies.



  1. Great post! I didn't realize milk made it worse, guess I shouldn't have had that bowl of cereal.


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