The Best Foods When Sick

Despite the fact that the flu and the common cold are so widespread, no cure exists yet for either. When a person gets sick, the only things he can do is rest and take medications to feel better while the sickness passes. Luckily, the foods that a person eats when he suffers from a cold or flu can influence the length of the sickness by boosting the function of the immune system.


According to the World’s Healthiest Foods website, eating spinach speeds healing when sick because it is rich in vitamin A, E and K. These vitamins found in spinach facilitate for white blood cells to fight off infections and heal the body faster, according to World’s Healthiest Foods. Adding some spinach into a soup or eating a large spinach leaf salad can get rid of the sickness faster.


Eating salmon promotes many health benefits, but one of the less commonly known health benefits of salmon includes boosting white blood cell levels. Dr. Bill Sears, Pediatrician and Professor of Pediatrics at the University of California at Irvine explains that the omega 3 fatty acids increase the body’s production of white blood cells, which fight off sicknesses. Eating smoked salmon on a bagel or grilling a fillet of salmon can help get rid of a cold quickly.

Bell Peppers

Foods with vitamin C benefit the ill as well. Dr. Bill Sears states on his website that foods with vitamin C, such as bell peppers stop viruses from entering the body while increasing the body’s ability to fight off sickness. Therefore, eating more vitamin C from foods like bell peppers can help a person to get over his cold or flu in a shorter amount of time. Dipping slices of bell peppers in hummus or ranch dressing make it easy to get vitamin C without having to do a lot of cooking.


Crab has protein, which stimulates the immune system while allowing the body to produce more antibodies, according to the World’s Healthiest Foods website. The mineral zinc found in crab meat also aids in creating healthy immune system function. Dr. Bill Sears states that three ounces of crab has about 7 mg of zinc, which increases the amount of “killer T cells” which fight sickness in the body. Even canned crab, which sick with the cold and flu can prepare easily, contains both protein and zinc.

About this Author

Sarah Davis has worked in nutrition in the clinical setting and currently works as a licensed Realtor in California. Davis began writing about nutrition in 2006 and had two chapters published in “The Grocery Store Diet” book in 2009. She enjoys writing about nutrition and real estate and managing her website, She earned her bachelor’s degree in nutrition from San Diego State University.