The height of winter is prime time for cold and flu season. Avoid getting sick by boosting your immune system with proper nutrition. The following recipes are all easy to make and don’t require any exotic ingredients. Enjoy these immune boosting recipes to keep your body as healthy as possible this winter.
Roasted Salmon with Oranges
Salmon is a good source of vitamin D which is a nutrient that triggers your immune cells to kill bacteria and viruses that are invading your body. With the addition of the orange and its vitamin C content, you have a double-whammy immune boosting, healthy and delicious dinner.
- 2 fresh oranges cut into rounds
- 1 white onion thinly sliced
- 1 ½ tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 5 (6oz) salmon fillets
- 1 tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning
- 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- ¼ cup orange juice
- 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a small cup, stir together lemon pepper seasoning, garlic powder and dried parsley. In a 9×13 dish, arrange orange slices in one layer then place a thin layer of onions on top of the oranges. Drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle ½ of the spice mix on the top. Roast for about 25 minutes in preheated oven until onions are brown and tender. Remove baking dish and increase oven temperature to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Move onion and orange mixture to the sides of baking dish and place salmon fillets in the middle. Season salmon with the remaining spice mixture. In a small bowl, whisk together orange and lemon juices, then pour evenly over salmon. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes at 450 degrees, then remove. Discard roasted oranges and garnish the salmon with fresh orange slices and the roasted onions.
Healthy Green Smoothie
The greens in this smoothie provide immune-boosting vitamins A and C, in addition to protein, fiber and calcium. This smoothie is a perfect immune boost and can be enjoyed as a quick breakfast or an afternoon snack.
- 2 medium bananas
- 1 apple chopped (for the most nutrients, leave skin on)
- 1 cup chopped kale with stems removed
- 1 cup spinach
- ½ cup orange juice
- ½ cup water
- Ice cubes (around 10-12)
Place all ingredients in a blender and pulse several times. Puree until the mixture is smooth and serve. You can increase the nutrition by adding some ground flaxseed or chia seeds to this recipe or try a slightly different flavor by chopping a pear rather than an apple.
Cold Cucumber Salad
Perfect for a refreshing side, this cucumber salad is super quick and easy to make. Cucumbers contain potassium, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, vitamins C, B1, B2, B6 and provitamin A. Cucumbers also aid healthy blood circulation, which is an essential factor in boosting your immune system.
- 3 cucumbers peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon salt
- ¼ cup fresh vidalia onion
- 1 ½ cups sour cream
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Cracked black pepper
In a bowl, toss cucumber slices with salt, then refrigerate for one hour. When chilled, drain the cucumbers and pat dry. In a large bowl, mix sour cream, sugar and black pepper. Stir in the cucumber and onion and stir until thoroughly mixed.
Other immune boosting foods include tomatoes, mangoes, kiwis and carrots, to name a few. Prepare a spinach salad with tomatoes, carrots and bell peppers or create a tropical fruit salsa with mango, papaya, pineapple and kiwi. Have fun in the kitchen preparing the above immune boosting recipes, and coming up with your own dishes.