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Feed a Cold, Starve a Fever? The Real Answers.


My entire family is under the weather. It’s the stuffy head, unable to move, slightly sore throat, sneezing sort of thing that has you feeling just down enough that you’d love to spend the afternoon under the covers. The best thing to do in this situation, of course, is to feed the cold…right?

That’s what we’ve been told. So, what’s the truth? What foods do we eat to feed a cold, and should we really starve a fever?

From WebMD, “When you eat a nutritional, well-balanced diet, many other factors fall in place that keep your body functioning optimally. Foods that are rich in nutrients help fight infections and may help to prevent illness. Because a wide array of nutrients in foods — some of which we may not even know about — are essential for wellness, relying on dietary supplements (vitamins and minerals) for good nutrition may limit your intake to just the known nutritional compounds rather than letting you get the full benefit of all nutrients available in food.”

So, let’s feed your body, and get everyone healthy and feeling well again.


  • Bioflavonoids 1 of 9
    Bioflavonoids
    Some studies have indicated that bioflavanoids can help trigger immune system response, which would help you kick that cold faster.
    Make a Grapefruit and Avocado Salad
  • Vitamin C 2 of 9
    Vitamin C
    Vitamin hasn't been shown to prevent or treat colds, but getting it daily can help shorten the overall number of days you have a cold per year. Include it as part of your regular diet to stay healthy.
    Make Kale Salad with Lemon, Parmesan and Dried Cranberries
  • Yogurt 3 of 9
    Yogurt
    If you're a daily yogurt eater, you're in luck because, "Some studies have shown that eating a daily cup of low-fat yogurt can reduce your susceptibility to colds by 25%."
    Olive Oil Granola with Berries and Yogurt
  • Antioxidants 4 of 9
    Antioxidants
    "Including more raw fruits and vegetables in your diet is the best way to ensure a high intake of antioxidants."
    Make Blueberry Chicken Salad
  • Phytochemicals 5 of 9
    Phytochemicals
    Phytochemicals help battle your cold once you have it. Broccoli is a great source, as are apples, apricots, cabbage, carrots and tomatoes.
    Make Lemon Pepper Tahini Broccoli
  • Beta-carotene 6 of 9
    Beta-carotene
    Beta-carotene and other antioxidants neutralize free radicals.
    Roast a Spaghetti Squash
  • Orange Squash 7 of 9
    Orange Squash
  • Zinc 8 of 9
    Zinc
    You've probably seen zinc supplements in the store, but you can also get it in eggs, nuts, seafood and whole grains.
    Savory Oatmeal with a Poached Egg via Rice and Wheat
  • Chicken Noodle Soup 9 of 9
    Chicken Noodle Soup
    So what about the good, old standby chicken noodle soup? Well, it turns out that it helps "clear nasal congestion as well as thin mucus," which makes it easier to cough, and it may also have an anti-inflammatory effect that makes you feel a bit better by eating it, so feel free to slurp it up when the sniffles hit.
    Make Chicken Noodle Soup

Health Facts relating to food and colds courtesy of WebMD.

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