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Home School of Community and Health Studies Blog 2020 January 20 Ten foods you need to eat when you get sick

Ten foods you need to eat when you get sick


The cold weather outside leads to cold and flu season, and no matter how much you avoid it, sometimes you’re just going to get sick. One of the many things you can do to help speed along your recovery is making sure that the food you eat will help you get better. Here are ten of the best foods to eat when you’re sick, sourced from Cooking Light , the Food Network, and Good Housekeeping.

Oats and Oatmeal

It’s a carb that supplies you with energy without making your body work. Plus, it’s warm and comforting. It’s easy to eat, and if you’ve got a sensitive stomach, bland enough not to bother it, but you can also add yogurt or fruit to healthily spice it up.

Ginger-based food and drink

If you’ve got nausea or other stomach problems, ginger has been proven to help reduce it, through a compound called 6-gingerol. Of course, no one wants to eat ginger straight-up, so instead, you can put it in your food, or make ginger tea. While it’s not the healthiest choice, you could drink ginger ale in a pinch to help you stop feeling sick.

Kiwi and other vitamin C-rich Fruit

Vitamin C is always a good thing to put in you, but it’s especially critical when you’re sick because it’ll reduce your symptoms, and make you get well faster. As for how to get some vitamin C, kiwis are a good choice, because they actually have more vitamin C than an orange does. Other good choices include bell peppers and strawberries.

Yogurt of all kinds

No matter what way you take it, yogurt is dense in nutrients, and can easily taste great. Plain Greek yogurt’s a good choice since it’s high in protein, which helps your immune system regenerate, plus you can add some of those vitamin C-rich fruits to it for more healing nutrition. It’s also a good source of probiotics, the best thing to help you get rid of a common cold.

Tea and hot drinks

Hot drinks are the best thing for a sore throat or congestion, and tea’s probably the healthiest way to get that hot drink in you. As for what kind, green tea’s a good choice, thanks to it having antioxidants in it that can strengthen your immune system. Plus, you can have ginger tea, or put some lemon in it to include some of the stuff from earlier on this list. On top of all that, it’s another warming, comforting thing that’s good for your soul. Speaking of the soul…

Chicken Soup

It’s not just an old wives’ tale, Chicken soup really is good to have when you’re sick. It hydrates you, and it gives you protein to help you heal, on top of also having antioxidants to relieve your cold symptoms. Generally speaking, though, any good broth-based soup will help you out, since the heat will ease your chest congestion and open up your sinuses. And speaking of chicken...


Eggs, once again, have a ton of protein in them but are also high in zinc and vitamin D, which boost your immune functions. Plus, depending on how you prepare them, they can be easier to cook and digest than a lot of foods, and easier on a sore stomach.


You should always drink plenty of water, but it’s particularly important when you’re sick since a lot of illnesses will dehydrate you, making you feel worse, and making it harder for your body to flush toxins out. Sports drinks, like Gatorade, can also help out by replacing the electrolytes you’re losing from that dehydration.

There’s a whole career to be made out of what food to eat when you’re sick, as a Food Service Worker. Now, being a Food Service Worker is a bit different than what the name implies. You’re not working in a restaurant. Instead, you’re a part of a healthcare team that provides for the nutritional needs of patients in hospitals and long-term care facilities. Because of that, Centennial College’s Food Service Worker program is taught at our School of Community and Health Studies. Over a single semester, you learn about the nutrition that a person needs to live a full, healthy life, as well as the ways nutrition affects and prevents illness and disease, through practical learning and a field placement that’ll connect you to the job market. Join up, and you can get a career where you help more people than just yourself get well with your food knowledge!

Written by: Anthony Geremia