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Diet Diva
Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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Prevent That Flu This Winter

Fighting the fluWith little boys ages 2 and 4, I try to do everything I can to prevent them for getting sick. They are bringing home other kid’s germs daily from school.  If I can do everything in my power to build their immune systems, I can keep them healthy! Recently, I blogged about the importance of getting the flu vaccine. This week I’ll talk about how eating right can reduce your risk of getting the cold and flu this season.

Flu season runs all the way until May and the winter months mean people are gathered indoors and in small places. It is so important to stay hydrated to protect against fatigue and to remember the power of fruits and vegetables when it comes to antioxidants, vitamins, and nutrients. Food and healthy lifestyle choices can boost your immune system and prevent you from getting those aches, stuffy noses, and sniffles that come along with catching the flu!

People tend to eat fewer fruits and vegetables in the winter time which is actually the opposite of what you should be doing! Everyone needs at least five servings of fruits and vegetables everyday to get adequate vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants – all things needed for a healthy immune system.

One way to get more fruits and vegetables in your diet is with smoothies. Jamba Juice  has several options that can help build a strong immune system and their use of whole fruit and quality ingredients is one of the many things I love about them. Two of my favorites for cold and flu are the “Coldbuster Smoothie” and the “Acai Super Antioxidant.”  You can also get boosters to help enhance your smoothie and give you that extra punch of vitamins and antioxidants to fight off colds!

  • The Probiotic Boost:  probiotics have been shown to help the immune system
  • The Daily Vitamin Boost: has 5000 IU (100%) Vitamin A and 90 mg (150% of Vitamin C)
  • The Immunity Boost:  With Vitamin C, zinc, and plant extracts to support your body’s natural defenses

You can also make your own smoothies at home.  Open blender and insert lots of frozen fruit, add some yogurt, and probiotic supplement for your own blend of probiotic and antioxidants!

You should aim to make fruits and veggies apart of every meal. Here are some additional ways you can easily add them to your daily routine!

  • Add a banana to your breakfast cereal with a glass of 100% fruit or vegetable juice
  • Look for citrus fruits, which are in season during the winter as a great source of vitamin C
  • Top a sandwich with tomatoes, avocados, and spinach
  • Have a super veggie salad with your dinner entrée
  • Slice up some apples and dip in almond butter for an afternoon snack

The flu does not have to be an inevitable part of winter this year! Aim to get your fruits and vegetables in daily to boost your immunity for your best chance at fighting it off!

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Tags: Healthy Eating

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About the Author


Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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