Winter Nutrition: Foods That Can Help Ease The Winter Months
When Winter rolls round, we often turn to foods that are considered a little more calorific as they contain more carbohydrates and a bit more stodge. But, if you stay on the healthy side of things foods we consume in the winter can have great health benefits.
Winter is often associated with colds, flus, and everything in between. Schools and workplaces are often a breeding ground for such viruses, so it can be hard for you and your family to avoid a spell of feeling under the weather during winter time. Whilst diet can’t exactly help you avoid colds or flu altogether, a healthy winter diet can better prepare your immune system to fight off unwanted illnesses.
Here are some foods that can help ease the winter months, and arm your immune system:
There is no better feeling than a hot bowl of soup on a cold winter’s day. Not only does soup bring a level of comfort to you and your family, but it’s a great way to get an intake of veggies. In summer, we tend to go mad on the salads but when winter rolls round it’s a different story… Homemade veggie soups are a great way to use up any vegetables you may have lying around. If you’re a smart shopper in the grocery store, you’ll notice seasonal vegetables are usually very reasonably priced, so you’re keeping the family and your bank account healthy! Add lentils or beans to your soups for a more filling option.
If you fancy something with a bit more bulk, homemade stews are full of health benefits.
Casseroles are a handy dish that all the family can enjoy. Winter is all about ensuring you and your family get your intake of nutritious foods. Casseroles are a great way to get your intake of vegetables, as well as protein. Like soup and stew, casseroles use seasonal vegetables and cheaper cuts of meat so they’re very economical.
Adding garlic to your winter recipes is very beneficial to you and your family’s health. Garlic has been seen as being extremely important for health for centuries, and was used by the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans in disease prevention. Garlic is extremely nutritious and very low in calories, great for Winter cooking!
Crush the garlic and leave to stand for 10 minutes before adding to your recipe to release it’s medicinal like qualities.
In Winter, we need an extra boost of Vitamin D aka the sunshine vitamin. This is due to the fact that in Ireland, the sun seems to disappear for six months of the year! Add vitamin D to your diet by consuming fish. Fatty fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel are highest in vitamin D.
Again, vitamin D is extremely important during Winter months. If your family aren’t fish eaters, dairy products are another way to boost your vitamin D intake. Check out this healthy Mac n Cheese recipe for a tasty family friendly dinner!