You know when you are about to come down with the sickness. It’s that brief moment between a case of mild sniffles and a scratchy throat and full blow drainage from your nose and a hacking cough that sound horrendous. There’s no debate on this: being sick is no fun at all.
So what do you do? You begin to hydrate with any and all fluids you can get your hands on. You load up on vitamin C and become a master of herbal teas, but what are you eating while you’re sick? Most people resort to foods that are extremely easy to make or easy to swallow, but these foods are not always conducive to your road to wellness. It’s not just about avoiding processed sugars and refined grains, though. Some foods that are deemed “healthy” can worsen symptoms or prolong the sickness. Consider avoiding and consuming the following foods when you are sick.
When You Have A Cold, Flu, Or Fever
While nuts contain valuable nutrients, including healthy fats, zinc, vitamin E, magnesium, and more, it is wise to refrain from eating them when you have the cold or flu. The fats are actually what you don’t want because the body has to work harder to digest them. Additionally, nuts are known histamine inhibitors that have the potential to increase congestion.
Eat Red Bell Peppers
Unless you have a nightshade allergy, red bell peppers are essential for anyone who comes down with a cold or flu. The active compound, quercetin, is a known antioxidant that can help prevent the virus from duplicating. It also repairs oxidative tissue damage and helps to calm inflammation associated with the bacteria or virus. Red peppers are also high in vitamin C, a necessary antioxidant can shorten cold symptoms.
Yes, you should typically eat your green vegetables, but broccoli is not for sickly people. While it contains beneficial fiber and other nutrients, broccoli can be difficult for the body to digest when sick. According to Mahmoud Ghannoum, a gut health expert, it is wise to avoid irritating the gastrointestinal tract when you’re sick, especially since a healthy gut is necessary for optimal immune function.
Mushrooms contain cytokines, which are proteins that work to regulate immune response by “sounding the alarm,” so to speak, when a foreign invader is present in the system. Cytokines also assist the body with entering sleep mode to promote a swift recovery. Additionally, research suggests that shiitake, cordyceps, and reishi mushrooms increase cytokines in the body and boost immune function.
When You Have A Stomachache, Nausea, Or Diarrhea
Avoid Dairy Products
Dairy products should be avoided whether your sinuses are clogged or your stomach is upset. The reason for this is because dairy contains lactose, which can be difficult for the body to digest, especially after experiencing diarrhea. The body needs lactase enzymes to digest lactose, and the body’s supply of lactase temporarily depletes with diarrhea because the gut lining becomes inflamed. You will most likely feel bloated or nauseous if you consume dairy products when your stomach isn’t feeling 100%.
Bananas are rich in potassium, which is necessary for balancing the amount of water in the body. It helps to maintain healthy cells, but potassium levels deplete when you have diarrhea or consistently vomit. Replenish the body’s potassium levels by consuming bananas, especially the ones that are more green than yellow. Bananas that are a little unripe contain resistant starch, which promotes the growth of healthy gut bacteria.
Beans contain a sugar known as alspha-galactosidase, which can upset stomach tissues and cause gas, bloating, cramping, or diarrhea. When experiencing diarrhea or other stomach issues, the body may not be able to synthesize enough gas-reducing enzymes to break down alspha-galactosidase. To avoid adding insult to injury, steer clear of beans.
Eat Steel Cut Oats
Steel cut oats are extremely gentle on the digestive system. The soluble fiber assists with pulling water into the digestive tract, helping to bulk up stool and regulate the rate at which food moves through the body. Steel cut oats also contain selenium and zinc, two minerals that protect the body from bacteria and viruses by enhancing immune function.