Winter doesn’t just take a toll on the earth; it takes a toll on our bodies as well.
Without the sun’s warmth on our skin, we feel more lethargic than usual and being cold causes our moods to suffer. And then of course there’s the ever common cold, the flu, and dry skin.
Now, more than ever, we need the help of super foods that are packed with vitamins to keep us healthy, happy, and awake.
1. Cauliflower – As white as the snow that has been covering the ground for months, this vegetable is actually one of the best things you can do for your body during the coldest months of the year. According to WebMD, cauliflower is high in vitamin C, which is a vitamin known to boost immune system function. This couldn’t be more helpful during cold and flu season. Eat these cooked with a little butter and salt or raw with some veggie dip.
2. Chickpeas – These little beans are like happy pills with effects that have been likened to taking Prozac. While they are obviously not an equal supplement, chickpeas are high in Vitamin B6, which aids in your body’s serotonin production. Chickpeas are often used in the creation of hummus, and there are a surprising number of ingredients that chickpeas can be substituted for in recipes for baked goods.
3. Spinach — Popeye wasn’t obsessed with this vegetable without reason. Like the chickpea, spinach is known to aid in serotonin production, but it is also known to help the digestive system and keep your eyes strong. Being so rich in vitamins, spinach can be helpful in relieving dry and itchy skin.
4. Kale — Now it’s time to get trendy. Many of you may be cringing at the mention of this leafy green, but it has become popular for a reason. According to Health.com, kale provides, “twice your recommended daily intake of vitamin A and seven times the recommended amount of vitamin K.” Not only that, but a one-cup serving of kale provides 80.4 mg of vitamin C.
5. Oatmeal — This is an option that is both warm and easy. It is also high in zinc, which helps bolster your immune system. The fiber in oatmeal also aids in digestion and helps to lower your cholesterol. This is one of the best foods for you year-round, but it is especially helpful to eat in the winter. Add some dried berries or granola for extra antioxidants and fiber.