September is the unofficial start of cold and flu season, and one of the primary symptoms in Goodyear is a sore throat. That burning, scratchy sensation in the throat is often the first sign of an upper respiratory infection. Sore throats usually clear up after a few days, but in the meantime, they can leave you feeling miserable.
Eating for Comfort
You may not have much of an appetite when you’re sick, but eating certain foods can help you recover more quickly and provide relief from throat discomfort.
Your Goodyear ENT doctor recommends the following when you have a sore throat:
- Chicken soup. Chicken soup has developed a reputation as a magical cure-all, and it turns out there’s scientific evidence to back up that claim. Chicken soup inhibits the movement of neutrophils, white blood cells that fight infection. Furthermore, the hot fluid promotes the movement of nasal mucus, the broth keeps you hydrated and the salt allows your tissues to retain fluid.
- Honey. You aren’t going to be busy as a bee when you’re sick, but you can still channel the insect by eating honey, which has been demonstrated to help protect against viral and bacterial infections. Just go easy on it—honey has a lot of sugar, which might prevent the immune system from working effectively. Avoid giving honey to children younger than a year old due to the possibility of botulism.
- Yogurt. Yogurt contains protein, carbohydrates, healthy fats and gut-friendly probiotic bacteria that aids the immune system in fighting off disease. The cool, soft texture is soothing when you’ve got a sore throat and will provide important nourishment to help speed up healing.
- Mashed potatoes. Another soft food excellent for a sore throat is mashed potatoes. Be sure to keep the skin on; it’s an excellent source of magnesium, vitamin C and antioxidants, all of which encourage a strong immune system. Let them cool off before you eat them in order to prevent irritation.
- Eggs. Eggs are chock full of of vitamins D and B12 and contain infection-fighting minerals such as zinc, iron and selenium. The most palatable way to enjoy them when you’re sick is scrambled, though by all means enjoy them soft boiled or over easy if you prefer.
- Oatmeal. Oatmeal is loaded with fiber and ingredients like magnesium, zinc and antioxidants, making it a great food for removing toxins from your body. Its soft texture means it’s easy to swallow and won’t cause irritation of the throat.
- Ginger. This Chinese root has several medicinal properties: it has been shown to reduce pain and inflammation and is effective at preventing nausea. Combining ginger with honey takes advantage of both ingredients and offers additional health benefits.
- Jell-O. A go-to for moms for decades, Jell-O doesn’t contain any special disease-fighting properties, but its smooth texture makes it an excellent choice for those who have a sore throat and can’t tolerate other foods. Just be aware of the high sugar content, which could suppress the immune system’s effectiveness.
- Ice cream. Any cold food will help soothe a sore throat and reduce swelling, and there’s nothing tastier than ice cream! Limit yourself to one scoop though; too much sugar can reduce your immune system’s ability to fight off disease.
- Smoothies. Smoothies made with fruit such as berries and citrus, or leafy greens like kale or celery, can help soothe irritation and give your immune system a boost. The Vitamin C will promote faster healing, too.