Staying healthy through the flu season is a challenge. Even with plenty of immune-boosting foods, you can still fall victim to the seasonal flu bugs. It is important to eat a good diet filled with fruits, vegetables, spices, herbs and protein to keep your body strong and safe against the flu.
It’s time to cold-proof your body with nourishing and easy to digest foods. Here’s a simple meal plan with healthy ingredients that can keep your immune system in fighting shape and help you stay above cold and cough.
It is important to drink plenty of fluids when you are sick and also eat Vitamin C-rich fruits, herbs such as ginger and garlic, leafy greens and yoghurt to combat the flu virus in your body. This meal plan is just an example for eating good nourishing meals on a sick day.
Garlic – Garlic has excellent antibacterial and antimicrobial properties that help prevent infection in the immune system and also fight against common cold or other flu viruses.
Ginger – Ginger root has digestive properties that help in soothing sore throat, nausea and fighting against sickness in the body.
Yogurt – Probiotic properties of yoghurt fight against bacteria and other microbes in the body.
Pepper– Black peppercorns ease chest congestion, blocked nose and act as a natural cough suppressant. It helps in warding off cold and flu in your body by boosting immunity.
Muskmelon – Muskmelon is an excellent source of Vitamin C and A. It helps the body stay hydrated because of its high water content. This fruit cools the body and protects against the heat. Muskmelon also strengthens the immune system by stimulating the production of white blood cells to help fight against infections.
Cauliflower – Cauliflower is a healthy vegetable to include when you are sick because it is high in vitamins such as Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6. It has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce disease risk.
Steam Dosa with Garlic Chutney and Muskmelon
21/2 cups parboiled rice
4 tablespoons urad dal
2 tablespoons Fenugreek seeds
11/2 teaspoon salt
Soak rice urad dal and fenugreek seeds in water for 4 hours. Make it into a fine batter in a mixer grinder and add the required salt. Let the batter ferment overnight.
Heat a dosa tawa. Pour a ladle full of fermented batter and cook for 2 minutes until the pores appear on the top of the dosa. Do not flip the dosa. Served steamed dosa with spicy chutney.
15 cloves of garlic
15 dry chilli
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 tablespoons of tamarind paste
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon oil
Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds, dry chili, garlic and fry for a minute. Add tomatoes and tamarind paste and let it cook for 10 minutes. Cool down and make it into a paste by adding required salt.
Cauliflower Fry with Pepper Rasam, Steamed Rice, Yoghurt and Parippu Curry
1 cup blanched cauliflower florets
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
A few sprigs of curry leaves
One teaspoon salt,
2 teaspoons chili powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
2 teaspoons oil
3 tablespoons gram flour
Heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds, curry leaves, cauliflower and fry for 2 minutes. Add the spice powders, salt and gram flour and cook for 10 minutes until the cauliflower florets turn out crispy.
1 cup boiled Toor dal
Half cup grated coconut
2 green chilies
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp mustard seeds
A sprig of curry leaves
One teaspoon turmeric powder and salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil
Make coconut, green chilies and cumin seeds into a thick paste.
Heat coconut oil in a pan, add mustard seeds curry leaves, boiled toor dal, turmeric powder and salt and add a little water, cook for 3 minutes. Pour the coconut mixture and adjust the consistency and cook for 5 minutes.
1 tablespoon of tamarind paste
Two tomatoes roughly chopped
A handful of curry leaves and coriander leaves
1 green chili
Half tablespoon turmeric powder
Half tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon salt
4 garlic cloves
One tablespoon of whole peppercorns
Three glasses of water
1 tablespoon ghee
1 tsp mustard seeds and asafetida
Roughly crush garlic cloves and pepper and keep aside.
Mix tamarind paste, tomatoes, curry leaves, coriander leaves, green chili, turmeric powder, chili powder, salt with three glasses of water.
Heat ghee in a pan. Splutter mustard seeds, asafetida and add crushed pepper and garlic cloves. Pour the tamarind mixture and cook for 15 minutes.
Spicy Chicken Soup
Half cup chicken boneless
1 onion, carrot, beans and green peas diced
1 teaspoon chili powder
One and half teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper crushed
1 cup chicken stock
1 bay leaf
Half tomato chopped
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon ginger garlic crushed
Heat butter in a saucepan. Add bay leaf, ginger, garlic, onion, tomato, carrot, beans, green peas and fry for a minute. Add diced chicken pieces, spices and pour in chicken stock. Cook on medium flame for 15 minutes. Serve hot with soup sticks.