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HomeHealthExclusive: 10 superfoods to beat cold and flu in winters - take...

Exclusive: 10 superfoods to beat cold and flu in winters – take your pick and be healthy!

Winter diet: It’s the season to be jolly! With the advent of December, winter has officially set in. And while you layer yourself with woolen wears or curl up under a blanket, it’s important to pay attention to your diet. The cold temperatures bring with them their own set of health problems. “Winter seasons report more patients coming in with health complications related to respiratory viruses and infections like common flu and influenza. Respiratory viral illnesses are seen to thrive in colder temperatures and generally, flu-like diseases spread more during winters. Factors like cold temperatures and higher humidity levels are favourable conditions for any virus to flourish and become potent,” says Dr Priyanka Rohatgi, Chief Nutritionist, Apollo Hospitals, New Delhi. She mentions that it is important to add food items to your diet that would not only keep your body warm from the inside but will also fulfill the requirement of essential nutrients, that the cold and dreary weather can drain you off. 

Also read: High blood sugar: 7 low-carb, ‘magic’ vegetables people with diabetes can safely eat

There are some ‘superfoods’ that naturally comprise essential nutrients that can be real immunity boosters during winter.  Dr Priyanka Rohatgi gives Zee News Digital the list of 10 superfoods for winters:

1) Carrots: Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, which the body then processes into Vitamin A which in turn keeps our eyes healthy and protects them from the sun. Eating carrots regularly is also useful in preventing cataracts. Carrots are antioxidant-rich and can be boiled and put in hot soups or cooked into stir-fries and curries.

2) Sweet Potatoes: This delicious root vegetable is easy to cook. They can be boiled or roasted and mashed sweet potatoes can taste great with your meal. They are rich in antioxidants, beta-carotene, and fiber and are a healthier alternative to regular potatoes.

3) Broccoli: A storehouse of antioxidants and vitamins, broccoli is an ideal food that can keep you protected during the winter flu season.

4) Red Capsicum/Bell Pepper:  Red capsicum does not only look good but is full of health benefits! Rich in carotenoids, red bell pepper has been linked to lowering blood pressure levels and mitigating risks of developing heart diseases and even various forms of cancer.

5) Citrus Fruits: Not just for summers, citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, sweet lime, and grapefruits are great for winters too. In fact, orange, typically, is a winter fruit. Citrus fruits are rich in Vitamin C, which helps build immunity and helps our body to fight against viral and bacterial infections.

6) Pomegranates: Pomegranates are healthy winter fruit that can be enjoyed in different ways. They contain a whole host of antioxidants and are also rich in important nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium, and iron.

7) Pears: This is actually an all-season fruit. Pears are packed with good fibre and is rich in various nutrients such as Vitamin C, Vitamin K, copper, and magnesium. Pears check the chances of developing heart diseases and gut-related illnesses.

8) Oats: It is a popular staple in the health food scene and are also very useful as winter food. This cereal grain is highly nutritious, is an excellent source of soluble fibre, and is rich in antioxidants, making them ideal to fight common illnesses during cold weather.

9) Green Tea:  Containing strong antioxidants, green tea has shown proven health benefits and is known to help in burning fat, and lowering risks of heart disease, diabetes, brain illnesses, and even some forms of cancer. In winter, when you feel the need to sip on hot beverages, have green tea rather than sugar-loaded hot chocolate or coffee. 

10) Nuts and seeds: Nuts and seeds are a high, energy-dense fuel source. Containing concentrated protein, fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, phosphorus, fibre, nuts and seeds are excellent for health and also aid in weight management.

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