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5 amazing winter spices to fight cold and flu; how to add them to your diet

Come winters and a host of illnesses from cold, cough, sore throat, respiratory trouble to aches and pains can stop you from enjoying the weather and feeling your best. Immunity may need an extra boost in colder months as the dry winter air may make it difficult for your body to fight infections. Also, we tend to be more inactive in winter months as the extreme weather can at times make stepping outside almost impossible. Viruses can circulate quickly when people are in close proximity inside. To counter all these winter troubles, it’s important to make the right additions to your diet. Spices are the winter superfoods we should definitely consider including in our meals and drinks. Not only they help boost immunity but also enhance flavour. (Also read: 9 healthy and tasty ways to add carrot to your diet this winter)

“There are plenty of tried-and-true ways to keep colds and the flu at bay—they don’t just involve hiding under a blanket and bingeing on Netflix with a box of tissues and medicines by your side,” says Komal Patel, Clinical Nutritionist, Fit India Ambassador & Founder, Diet Studio.

Komal Patel suggests 5 spices that can help one fight the winter ailments:

1. Ginger

As a herbal cold treatment, ginger has a long history. This root vegetable is known for its strong warming effects on your body, which is why ginger tea makes an excellent drink when you’re feeling under the weather.

How to consume

Hot water flavoured with honey and freshly grated ginger can also be a soothing beverage for sore throat.

2. Cinnamon

The smell of cinnamon is enough to make anyone feel better but did you know that cinnamon has even more powerful health benefits than just smelling good? Cinnamon contains antioxidants that help fight infection and inflammation, so it’s a great way to keep yourself healthy during the cold and flu season.

How to consume

Add 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and grated ginger in a cup of warm water and stir it with honey. You can have the shot twice a day.

3. Black Pepper

Due to its antibacterial characteristics, this spice aids in preventing the spread of colds and flu. Including it in your diet regularly will help strengthen your immunity and guard against respiratory infections and chest congestion.

How to consume

Add freshly crushed black pepper or black pepper powder to your cup of turmeric milk. If you don’t want to use milk, combine freshly crushed black pepper and black tea, then season with sea salt.

4. Turmeric

Turmeric is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, which can help fight off colds and the flu. It’s also great for your immune system and supports healthy joint function.

How to consume

Ginger-turmeric concoction has incredible benefits on colds. Take one cup of purified water, add one inch of ginger, one teaspoon turmeric, and half a lemon. Take this miraculous mixture once every two to three days.

5. Tulsi

Tulsi leaves, often known as basil, are frequently used to make desi remedies that heal microbial illnesses and strengthen immunity. It not only has antibacterial and analgesic characteristics that aid in treating various conditions, including dry cough, but tulsi leaf tea also cures allergic bronchitis and asthma.

How to consume

Combine one cup of water with five cloves and eight basil leaves and bring to a boil. After adding a dash of salt, let the tea cool. Drink it many times daily to relieve coughing. You can gargle with basil infused water if you have a sore throat.

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