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As the cook in my family, I have learned to incorporate many herbs and spices into my daily cooking that will improve my family’s overall health. Below you will find some of the more popular and tasty spices to reach for this year’s cold and flu season:

Turmeric: This is one of my personal favorites. Turmeric is a great anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, which possesses great immune properties.   This is easily sprinkled in or on foods like chicken, soups and more.

Cayenne: Vitamin C is one of those GOD given vitamins we all know works great for boosting immune function and cayenne is a leader in the spice rack for it’s vitamin C content. An added benefit is it will also help decongest a stuffy nose and promote circulation for those who find themselves under the weather.

Horseradish: This is one of my favorites for nasal congestion and as a preventative for respiratory congestion. Using horseradish daily will help keep your mucous membrane flowing freely and help rid flush away troublemakers like viruses and bacteria.

Garlic: (Not cooked) Fresh crushed garlic possesses numerous benefits to support the immune system. Topically it has great anti-bacterial properties. It may sound gross, but using fresh crushed garlic by mouth can be helpful for those with a sore throat due to infection.

Onion: Similar in actions to garlic, consuming onions daily will help boost and support immune function. With a cold, I will make a tea with onion, garlic and cayenne pepper to speed up the process of getting rid of my cold symptoms.

Ginger: Used either in foods or as a tea, ginger is another one of GOD’s great immune boosters and inflammation fighters. Used daily when you are sick to help reduce the aches, pains and chills.

Pepper(s): Look for red, yellow or orange peppers for the best support of your immune system. These are high in vitamin C and Carotenoids which both help boost immune function. (Paprika is a great spice instead of using the food)

Coriander: Used in Ayurveda (Indian medicine) for many health benefits, coriander not only tastes great, but helps support the immune system and has great anti-inflammatory effects.

Fennel: One of nature’s great cough and cold spices. The licorice tasting spice can also be beneficial for a sore throat when used as a tea.

As you can see, there are many great tasting herbs/spices we can use daily at home to help during this cold and flu season. This is in keeping with the old saying “Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food”. Happy cooking!