Top foods for boosting health this fall

It's that time of year when the days get shorter, the weather gets colder and damper and the coats, hats and scarves start coming out. During this time of year you want to make sure that you are giving your body the best source of nutrition to keep you feeling energised and healthy, while avoiding those nasty bugs and colds. If you are one of those people that struggles with the cold and flu season then you may want to start including some of these foods.

Ginger - The powerhouse for health. Ginger is a strong antioxidant that protects our cells from free radical damage. It has been shown to help with congestion, throat soreness and helps to kill off cold viruses. Having both antibacterial and antibiotic properties it becomes a great alternative to cold and flu medications (using as a preventative measure is best). Why not add some ginger to your morning green smoothies, soups, stews, stirfrys or to a warming drink of hot water and lemon?

Garlic - Another great addition to your diet. Containing a compound called allicin which when digested can help fight off unwanted free radicals that damage cells in the body. It helps boost our immune system with its antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal effects. If you are brave you could juice it along with fresh lemons, or for those a bit less adventurous why not add it into salad dressing, soups, sauces or marinades?

Kale/cavelo nero - Green leafy vegetables are one of the forerunners of the vegetable world and rightly so. They contain a whole host of nutrients that are needed to protect the body from colds and flus. These include vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, manganese, iron, vitamin B6 and much more. They have been shown to help with detoxification within the body which help eliminate unwanted toxins that can affect our health. If you haven't tried kale now is the time as it comes back into season. Try it steamed with a drizzle of lemon juice, baked in the oven with a bit of olive oil, sea salt and pepper for a healthy snack idea, or mixed into a vegetable bake.

Coconuts and coconut oil - A healthy alternative to other vegetable oils that can lead to inflammation in the body, the coconut is a perfect addition to any healthy diet. It is rich in lauric acid which has been linked to improved immunity. Why not add a tbsp. to your green smoothie, or use in place of vegetable oils in your favourite treats or leave the store bought chocolate on the shelf and start to make your own using coconut oil?

There are many other foods that will help protect your body during the colder months. Focusing on a variety of seasonal produce including vegetables and fruits, grass fed or pasture raised meats, oily fish, organic eggs, beans, pulses, nuts, seeds and whole grains will give you the best chance to protect your body this fall.

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