Top 10 Superfoods for Winter


Regularly eaten superfoods, together with exercise, weight-control, stress reduction and healthy sleep habits, can help you live a long and healthy life, according to Steven G. Pratt, MD of Scripps Memorial Hospital in California. Dr. James W. Forsythe says, “Phytochemical-rich foods do play an important role in strengthening the immune system. It’s important to aim for at least 2 to 3 services of fruits and 3 to 5 servings of vegetables every day.”

Photo Caption Blueberries are abundant with nutritional value.
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A hot cup of tea can be comforting to your body, when sipped on a cold winter day. Black, green, white and oolong teas all contain polyphenols. Tea ranks at least as high or higher than many vegetables and fruits in the ORAC score, a score that measures antioxidant properties of plant-based foods. Herbal tea, properly termed, tisane, does not have these particular health-promoting properties.

Photo Caption Relax and stay warm with a cup of tea.
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Hard, winter squash provides a valuable source of vitamin C, as well as folic acid, magnesium and potassium. Winter squash varieties are all quite high in fiber and contain generous amounts of the antioxidant carotene, which is beneficial to your immune system.

Photo Caption Bake squash for an easy, nutritious dish. Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

Apples are a considerable source of potassium, fiber and disease-fighting antioxidants, such as polyphenols and vitamin C to boost your immune system. According to Steven G. Pratt, MD, evidence suggests it is the complex synergistic interactions between the various elements that make apples so healthful. Eat a wide variety of apples with the skin in tact. A study in “Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry” confirmed that the concentration of antioxidants in an apple’s skin is several times greater than in its flesh.

Photo Caption Eat an apple a day.
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Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes provide a good source of beta-carotene, the plant form of Vitamin A, and other carotenoids, all helping to support a healthy immune system. The purple-fleshed sweet potato contains anthocyanins, peonidins and cyanidins, having antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable that is rich in isothiocyanates, a family of phytochemicals: glucoraphanin, gluconasturtiian and glucobrassicin. This trio is able to support all steps in your body’s detox process, which includes activation, neutralization, and elimination of harmful contaminants.

Photo Caption Children often like broccoli.
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Whey Protein
Whey is a by-product from making cheese, having numerous health benefits. It helps to boost immunity by raising glutathione levels in your body. Whey protein also helps limit the growth of harmful bacteria while promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria. It is available in a variety of flavors.

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Garlic is an allium, a family of plants containing allyl sulfides, phytochemicals not found in any other foods, according to Karen Collins, RD. Garlic is an anti-inflammatory that can help to control arthritis. It has been shown to have significant antibiotic properties, decreasing the severity and incidence of bacterial infections. Fresh garlic is better than dried garlic or supplements. Wait 10 to 15 minutes after chopping garlic before cooking, to allow the active form of the phytochemicals to form.

Photo Caption Cook with garlic and enjoy the healthy benefits.
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Blueberries are a rich source of antioxidants like Anthocyanins, vitamin C, vitamin A, copper, selenium, zinc, iron, B complex and vitamin E. Among their many health benefits, blueberries will boost your immunity and prevent infections.

Photo Caption Blueberries make a sweet, low-calorie snack.
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Shiitake, maitake, and reishi mushrooms contain beta-glucans. These are powerful immune boosting components that are effective in stimulating the immune system to fight cold and flu. These mushrooms can be eaten whole or are also available in supplement form.

Photo Caption Slice mushrooms into your salad.Photo
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Probiotic bacteria is found in yogurt and kefir. Probiotics help maintain balance in the gastrointestinal tract by staving off unwanted yeast and bacteria. According to Dr. James W. Forsythe, probiotics can help to prevent and reduce the length and severity of the common cold.

Photo Caption Dip fruit into your yogurt.
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Original Article: LIVESTRONG.COM