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Eat Yourself Healthy!

Despite the huge number of cold and flu remedies, immune boosters and stay-well supplements, one sure-fire way to boost your immunity this winter is through healthy eating:

Vitamin C This cold-fighting antioxidant increases the production of infection-fighting white blood cells and antibodies and increases levels of interferon, which is the antibody that coats cell surfaces, thereby preventing the entry of viruses. The best way to get it is through oranges, strawberries, blackcurrants and other fruit – not pills or The Green Stuff which contains rosehips, nettles and lemon peel – all very rich in Vitamin C.

Vitamin E This antioxidant stimulates the production of natural killer cells and B-cells that destroy nasty germs and bacteria. This protection for the immune system is especially important in the elderly, whose immune function is reduced.

Food sources include plant oils, nuts, green leafy vegetables and wheat germ, although a supplement is especially important for the elderly and other populations with lowered immunity.

Zinc While some studies have shown that the zinc lozenges can lower the incidence and severity of infections, other studies have failed to show this. More than 75 milligrams a day can actually inhibit immune function. Good zinc sources are oysters or fortified cereal, or The Green Stuff.

Hot Foods Spice things up with chilli, hot mustard, pepper, onions, horseradish and garlic. Such foods contain substances called “mucolytics,” which help ease congestion in the sinuses. Or simply try our Herbal Snuff… brings tears to your eyes, but it’ll clear up your sinuses quickly and effectively!

Chicken Soup The so-called “Jewish penicillin” is apparently more than a bowl of TLC and soothing hot vapours. One study showed that there are anti-inflammatory properties in the soup that stopped the movement of neutrophils, which stimulates the release of mucous.