Immune-boosting winter meal ideas

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It’s always important to support your immune system during winter with a diet that’s rich in immune-boosting foods – and never more so than this year as we face a global pandemic. To make it easier for you to eat well through the season, here are five system-strengthening recipes that are quick, easy and delicious.

Porridge with Blueberry Compote
These comforting breakfast oats include two power-packed ingredients: blueberries,  a superfood brimming with antioxidants, vitamin C and anthocyanins and yoghurt, which helps to maintain good gut health which in turn has a positive impact on your immune system. This particular recipe calls for 0% fat Greek-style yoghurt, but if you can’t find it on the shelves at your local supermarket, opt for low-fat or full-fat Greek yoghurt instead – whichever option suits your nutrition choices.

Green Smoothie
This appetising green smoothie is full of the immune-boosting goodness of spinach, which is rich antioxidants and beta carotene and almond milk, an excellent source of the antioxidant, vitamin E . Naturally sweetened with kiwi (another recognised immune booster), mango and pineapple, it’s quick and easy to make and is ideal for breakfast, lunch or an in-between snack.

Spinach Soup
If you prefer your greens cooked, this spinach soup is a warm, comforting way to get your daily dose of the good stuff – and half of the spinach is added fresh during blending to ensure you get an optimal dose of nutrients. Enjoy with a slice of wholegrain bread for a nutritious meal at lunch- or suppertime.  

Chicken and Broccoli Stir-fry
Who doesn’t love a healthy plate of food that’s super-quick to put together? This chicken and broccoli stir-fry is both these things – and completely delicious, too! It also packs a powerful immune-boosting punch thanks to these key ingredients: chicken, broccoli, garlic and ginger. 

Golden Milk
According to Medical News Today, this traditional Indian beverage, which is made with non-dairy milk, turmeric, cinnamon, ginger and honey (see their recipe below), not only boosts the immune system, but is also known for:

  • Reducing inflammation
  • Preventing cell damage
  • Improving mood
  • Supporting brain function and improving memory
  • Preventing heart disease
  • Lowering blood sugar levels
  • Improving bone health
  • Aiding digestion

Ingredients

  • ½ cup non-dairy milk, such as coconut or almond milk
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger or 1/2 tsp ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper (optional)
  • 1 tsp honey

Method
Combine all the ingredients in a pot. Next, bring the mixture to the boil, then reduce to a simmer. Let the mixture simmer for about 10 minutes or until it is fragrant. To serve, strain the mixture through a fine strainer to remove the spices. Golden milk will keep in the refrigerator for around 5 days.