When you’re feeling under the weather, it’s important to fuel your body with the right foods to help you recover as quickly as possible. However, with so many options in New York City, it can be difficult to know which foods to choose and which to avoid. Here are some top recommendations for what to eat (and what to avoid) when you’re sick in NYC.
What to Eat:
When it comes to fighting off a cold or flu, few foods are more effective than chicken soup. This classic remedy has been used for generations, and for good reason. Chicken soup is easy to digest, hydrating, and contains essential nutrients that can help boost your immune system. Additionally, the warmth of the soup can soothe a sore throat and clear up congestion.
When choosing a chicken soup, opt for a broth-based soup instead of a cream-based soup. This will help keep you hydrated and avoid excess calories. You can also add vegetables like carrots, celery, and onions to increase the nutritional value of your soup.
Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that can help ease nausea, stomach pain, and sore throat. Sipping on ginger tea can be a comforting way to stay hydrated and help alleviate your symptoms. Ginger also has a warming effect which can help improve blood flow, making it an effective remedy for cold hands and feet.
To make ginger tea, simply steep a few slices of fresh ginger in hot water for 5-10 minutes. You can also add lemon and honey for added flavor and health benefits.
Garlic is a natural antibiotic and has been shown to help reduce the severity and duration of cold and flu symptoms. Incorporating garlic into your meals can help boost your immune system and fight off infection. Try adding garlic to soups, stews, or roasted vegetables for an added health boost.
Leafy greens like spinach and kale are packed with vitamins and minerals that can help support your immune system. They’re also high in fiber, which can help regulate digestion and keep you feeling full. Adding leafy greens to your meals can help boost your nutritional intake and aid in your recovery.
Try adding spinach to your chicken soup or incorporating kale into a smoothie for a nutrient-packed meal.
Fruits like oranges, kiwis, and berries are high in vitamin C, which can help boost your immune system. They’re also a great source of hydration and can help keep you feeling energized. When choosing fruits, opt for fresh, whole fruits instead of juices or canned fruits which can contain added sugars.
Some other good options include grapefruit, pineapple, and papaya which are high in digestive enzymes and can help improve digestion.
What to Avoid:
Processed foods like chips, candy, and fast food are often high in sugar, salt, and unhealthy fats, which can weaken your immune system and make it harder for your body to fight off infection. Additionally, these foods are often low in nutritional value and can leave you feeling sluggish and lethargic.
When you’re sick, it’s important to focus on whole, nutrient-dense foods that can provide your body with the energy and nutrients it needs to recover.
Alcohol can dehydrate your body and weaken your immune system, making it harder for your body to fight off illness. It can also interfere with medication and prolong your recovery time. When you’re sick, it’s best to avoid alcohol altogether and focus on staying hydrated with water, herbal tea, or other non-alcoholic beverages.
Dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt can increase mucus production and exacerbate congestion and coughing. If you do choose to consume dairy, opt for low-fat options and consume in moderation. Additionally, some people are lactose intolerant which can cause digestive issues and exacerbate symptoms when sick.
When looking for alternative sources of calcium and protein, consider options like almonds, leafy greens, and tofu.
While some people swear by spicy foods to help clear up congestion, they can actually exacerbate symptoms like heartburn and acid reflux. It’s best to avoid spicy foods when you’re feeling sick and focus on more soothing, easy-to-digest foods.
Caffeine can dehydrate your body and interfere with medication, making it harder for your body to recover. It can also disrupt your sleep which is essential for a healthy immune system. Opt for caffeine-free options like herbal tea or water to stay hydrated and give your body the rest it needs to recover.
When you’re sick in NYC, it can be challenging to make healthy food choices. By incorporating chicken soup, ginger tea, garlic, leafy greens, and fresh fruit into your diet, and avoiding processed foods, alcohol, dairy, spicy foods, and caffeine, you can help support your immune system and feel better as soon as possible. Additionally, it’s important to stay hydrated and get plenty of rest to aid in your recovery. With these tips in mind, you’ll be on the road to recovery in no time.