Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS), bachelor of science
Brrrr! the season of cold winds and chilly nights is upon us. Winter has officially arrived. Along with the winter chill, this season also brings along chapped lips, a god awful flu and sudden shivers. But you don't have to surrender. Here's how to stop a cold before it takes hold.
1. Sweet potato
While sweet potatoes may not be considered a traditional cold-fighting food, they're a great source of vitamin a, which plays a key role in maintaining the health of your mucosal surfaces. This includes the inside of your nose and your gastrointestinal tract, as well as your skin. You might not think of your skin as part of your immune system but it keeps infections from entering your body. It's your first line of defense.
One of the most recent spices to be crowned a superfood, turmeric is a rich yellow powder often used in curry dishes. It's high in antioxidants and considered a natural anti-inflammatory. If you take it on a daily basis, it is known to relieve the body of toxins. It has been shown that people who consume turmeric are less susceptible to colds, coughs, and congestion.
3. Hot chocolate
Curling up with a cup of hot cocoa is one way to feel snug but adding a little dark chocolate to your diet is a great health booster too. The sweet contains flavonoids, a type of antioxidant thought to reduce the damage caused by free radicals, potential instigators of cancer and cardiovascular disease. A study in the journal of immunology research found that red blood cells were less susceptible to free radicals after people consumed a drink with flavonoid-rich cocoa.
Cinnamon, and other spices boost your metabolism which generates body heat. Include more spices in your meals, even if they are sprinkled on top, just a little bit. Cumin, coriander, turmeric, cloves, paprika, pepper, nutmeg and allspice are other good ones to incorporate as well. The hottest spices - like cayenne - will make you sweat and actually release heat from your body.
5. Coconut oil
As they metabolize, fats, in general, can help keep you warm. Besides from eating it, coconut oil is also useful as a moisturizer. Dry, cracked skin, lets heat escape more easily and is more sensitive to cold - especially when it's windy. If you keep your skin healthy and strong, it'll be better at keeping the heat in. Before heading out into the cold, try rubbing some coconut oil on your legs, arms and face.
Fresh or ground ginger is our favorite food to warm you up. Try using it in porridge, salad dressings, soups, cookies or muffins. One of our favorite ways to enjoy ginger is to put thin slices or grate some of the fresh roots into a mug of hot water. Not only does it help warm you up, but it boosts your digestive and immune systems to keep you nourished and strong in the face of any winter bugs.