The common cold is basically an upper respiratory condition triggered by a virus. The usual symptoms include nasal congestion, runny nose, fever and sneezing. There are billions of cases every year and typically affect children. With a healthy dietary lifestyle, it can help prevent and manage the symptoms of common cold. In case the symptoms are severe or long-lasting, it is best to schedule an appointment with a doctor as soon as possible. If you want to learn measures to manage the symptoms, read here.
Foods rich in vitamin C
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is basically a water-soluble vitamin that must be acquired from food. It is important to note that vitamin C also holds antioxidant properties which shield the body from bacteria.
The recommended dietary allowance for vitamin C in adults is 90 mg per day. As for children, they need between 15-75 mg on a daily basis depending on the age and health requirements. The consumption of 5 ½ cups of vegetables and fruits daily generally provides this required amount. The foods that contain the highest amount of vitamin C include oranges, citrus juices, strawberries, grapefruit, red bell peppers, tomatoes, baked potatoes and broccoli.
Even spicy foods can help minimize congestion linked with common cold. Due to this, miso, hot peppers and spicy international dishes such as Thai or Indian curries and Asian stir-fry can be beneficial. Take note that hot spices can be added to soups and other dishes for a beneficial effect.
Since the congestion often minimizes the ability of the individual to taste food, the potent flavor of spicy foods can provide great taste satisfaction throughout the cold as well. Individuals who are not accustomed to spicy foods must eat them with caution since they can trigger a burning sensation in the mouth.
Foods rich in zinc
Zinc is an essential mineral that is known to prevent or minimize the intensity or length of common cold once consumed at the start of the symptoms. The foods rich in zinc include beef shanks, oysters, lobster, crab, baked beans, pork, cashews, chickpeas, yogurt, milk and almonds. Many adults are usually deficient in zinc and the recommended intake is 40 mg daily. Since the excess intake of zinc through supplements can cause serious side effects, it is best to opt for foods rich in zinc.
Chicken soup is considered as a usual treatment for common cold. The steam and warmth provided by the soup can help relieve body aches and congestion. There are also certain ingredients in chicken soup that can help relieve the inflammation. The broth-based soups are recommended since the creamy types provide less hydration and might add to the congestion. Remember that chicken soups rich in vegetables provide additional benefits of minerals, vitamins and antioxidants. Since the high intake of sodium adds to water retention, it is best to opt for those that contain low sodium.