Health Hack: 7 Immune-Boosting Foods & Drinks (That Don’t Require Prep Time)

shutterstock_96814480If you’re worried about catching the flu — and who isn’t right now? — your simplest defense is a diet rich in antioxidants and whole, healthy foods. Of course, that’s easier said than done when you’re traveling or logging long hours at the office. For this week’s #HealthHack, we’ve rounded up immune-system boosting foods and beverages that you can get on the go and eat anywhere.

boost immune system

Corazonas Oatmeal Squares (#PlantSterols)

Plant sterols have a positive effect on both lowering stress levels and boosting the immune system. These oatmeal squares from Corazonas give you a healthy dose of plant sterols that you can throw in your purse.

Holy Basil

Holy basil also reduce stress and boost immune functioning. A 1991 study published in the Indian Journal of Pharmacology found it more potent as an anti-stress agent than ginseng. Fresh basil is a tasty addition to salad and sandwiches -- or just to nibble on it's own for it's immune-boosting effect.

Kombucha (#Probiotics)

Kombucha. Grab a kombucha for a beneficial boost of probiotics, which can boost your immune response to flu strains.

Miso Soup (#Probiotics)

Miso is also a good source of probiotics. For a dose of miso that you can brown bag, try Annie Chun's miso noodle soup bowl.

Winter Citrus

Ah, vitamin C, the classic immune booster. Good thing tangelos, tangerines and clementines are in season right now. Another good source of C on the go? Tomato juice or grapefruit juice (just beware of added sugars).

Elderberry Tea or Syrup

Sambucus--aka black elderberry--has anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties, making it perfect for colds and flu prevention as well as decreasing the severity of illnesses underway. Reap elderberry's immune-boosting benefits with Black Elderberry Syrup (this kind from gaia herbs is free of artificial flavors and colors, preservatives and alcohol; 100% vegan; and full of the immune supportive flavonoid compounds quercitin and rutin).Or try some tea that mixes elderberry with echinachea.

Indian Food

Order in Indian if you're feeling ill. Indian dishes tend to be full of illness-fighting herbs and spices such as turmeric, coriander, cloves, caraway seed, ginger and fenugreek.
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