The Cold Weather Diet

By: Jessa Goddard, Medical Reporter
By: Jessa Goddard, Medical Reporter

Knoxville (WVLT) - From cancer-fighting to heart healthy, study after study shows certain foods have different benefits to our health.

Now, scientists have compiled a list of foods you should include in your diet during the winter months to help you ward off a cold or the flu.

Medical Reporter Jessa Goddard runs down the list of must-have cold weather foods.

You've heard you are what you eat, but now science tells exactly what effect certain foods have on our bodies.

We've compiled a list of foods we're calling the cold weather diet, to help keep you healthy this winter.

Leading off the list, Citrus fruits, like oranges and grapefruits.

They contain 100%of your daily requirement of Vitamin C, as well as folate, a B-Vitamin that's good for your heart.

And, what's a cold weather diet without winter squash. It's full of Vitamins B and C, magnesium and fiber.

Also making the list, cranberries.

They're available fresh this time of year and are packed with fiber and Vitamin C.

These fruits and vegetables are rich with nutrients that can't be replaced by a vitamin.

"A multi-vitamin is good just for insurance purposes. But there's really no substitute for the natural, healthy foods," says Parkwest Dietician and Nutritionist Susan Higdon.

Legumes are also on the cold weather diet, they contain fiber and protein, and most beans are a great addition to winter soups and stews.

Not to be forgotten after Thanksgiving, turkey is lean, low in calories and high in protein.

Next on the list, cabbage.

It's a great source of vitamin a and contains natural phytochemicals.

"Your body needs all of these things to function well and to fight off disease. And in the winter time, when we're all in such close quarters, germs are spread much more easily and quickly," says Higdon.

And while fresh is best, frozen food is a good alternative.

You can find many healthy frozen fruits and vegetables in the freezer aisle.

And when produce is frozen fresh, it's often just as delicious and nutritious.

Obviously, the foods on the cold weather diet are good for you year-round.

You'll notice the fruits and vegetables on this list are all very colorful.

The nutritionist we spoke with recommends you try to get as many of these colors on your plate as possible.

For example, green broccoli and an orange sweet potato. The richer the color, the more nutritious the vegetable.


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