When we are feeling unwell it is often hard to focus on cooking – let alone cooking for immunity. This winter’s flu season has hit many of us quite hard. Many doctors have expressed how intense and long the flu season has been. Even once you are well enough to get out of bed the nausea, weakness and cough continues. It is really easy to succumb to not eating the best foods – toast and marmalade and – if it happens to be in the pantry, adding some fruit.
This isn’t really good enough. To help our immune system we need to give it the nutrients it needs. For those of you who have not suffered this winter it is likely your immune system is in top notch condition, however, Gaye thought this too as she’d been in contact with so many sick people; “ I’m not going down” she kept thinking and then as soon as she relaxed on her dream holiday – WHAM, BAM and damnation – that was the end for her!!
Of course it’s not just the intermittent colds and flu’s we are concerned about. We have clients, as well as friends and family suffering from chronic illness’ and undergoing major surgery and treatments for cancers and other not so nice conditions. These people often need special care when it comes to diet.
So what is important when providing food for ill people? Simply put, ask them. Don’t assume that their old favourite food will still find the yummy taste buds. My mother-in-law suffered from emphysema and during her final months she’d say when asked what she would like to eat “I just would like something nice”. However, she could never say what that was; so we tried different things – some worked and some didn’t.
Often ill people are constantly nauseated, they may have a dry mouth, a sore mouth, can’t stomach the thought of a heavy meal and just want to nibble throughout the day.
We thought we’d gather up a few immunity building recipes for you. Hopefully you’ll find them easy as well as palatable (yummy) and hopefully, if you are the patient someone else can shop and cook for you – oh wouldn’t that be nice!
Of course, all this does relate to skin. If you are ill, your skin receives the goodies you ingest – LAST!! This makes it more relevant for your diet to be as excellent as you can cope with. Without its nutrient’s the water retaining function of your skin cells decreases and you slowly begin to feel dry, look more wrinkly and you slowly become more sensitive to many of your favourite products. Your skin is impaired and severely dehydrated. Without help it will become reddened, irritated and inflamed, rough and everything may sting. For advice on products to help click here.
Recipe 1 – Chicken Noodle Soup
A little bit of protein and some easily digested chicken broth with soft veggies and the noodles. Lots of goodies and easy on the stomach. A fresh Chicken Broth has natural anti-inflammatory properties and digestive stimulants that can aid the body in healing as well aiding dehydration. Chicken Soup is classic healing food through many cultures. Really, does it get any better? Flavourful stock, fresh-cooked chicken, traditional vegetables, and egg noodles lend starchy body to the broth of this favourite soup that’s ready in just over an hour.
PREP: 15 MINS / COOK: 50 MINS / EASY / SERVES: 4
- 8 cups Chicken Stock or fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth
- 250g skinless, bone-in chicken thighs
- 350g skinless, bone-in chicken breast half
- 2 cups diagonally sliced carrot
- 2 cups diagonally sliced celery
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 170g uncooked medium egg noodles
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Celery leaves (optional)
- Ginger and Garlic (optional extra for healing and flavour)
- Combine the first 3 ingredients in a large soup pot over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 20 minutes.
- Remove chicken from pot; let stand for 10 minutes. Remove chicken from bones; shred meat into bite-sized pieces. Discard bones.
- Add carrot, celery, and onion (garlic and ginger) to soup pot (with your yummy fresh stock in it!); cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add noodles, and simmer 6 minutes.
- Add chicken, salt, and black pepper; cook for 2 minutes or until noodles are done. Garnish with celery leaves, if desired.
Recipe 2 – Buttermilk smoothie
Buttermilk sounds heavy and fatty doesn’t it? However, though traditional buttermilk is the liquid left over after churning butter from cream it also refers to fermented milk drinks common both in middle eastern countries and more recently all over the world. It is made from cows milk fermented with the lactic acid bacteria to create a sour taste and a product which lasts longer. It is also extremely good for you and tolerated by most lactose intolerant people. It makes it an excellent easy to digest base for ill people that is calorie and protein packed. You can add berries or other fruit, even some green veges – experiment!! Adding a teaspoon of the Miessence Super foods will boost the immunity and gut health of anyone!
PREP: 5 MINS / EASY / SERVES: 1
- Description of list: Ingredients for Buttermilk Smoothie
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
- 1/4 cup lemonade or orange juice
- 1/2 cup vanilla ice cream
- 1/4 cup liquid egg substitute
- Blend ingredients in a blender until smooth
Recipe 3 – Coconut Oil Roasted Veg with Nutritional Yeast
Not that long ago Coconut Oil was used to help achieve the “perfect tan,” now – not only do we avoid tanning our skin due to the risk of skin cancer and premature ageing, but we are looking at digesting Coconut Oil to improve our general health! The fatty acids in Coconut Oil are metabolised differently and go straight to the liver from the digestive tract, where they are used as both a quick source of energy and are thought to have therapeutic effects on several brain disorders. Coconut Oil can increase how many calories you burn compared to the same amount of other fats, aiding weight-loss with a well balanced diet and lifestyle. There are properties in Coconut Oil that can kill harmful pathogens, potentially helping to prevent infections. If you do your research you will find even more positive benefits of digesting Coconut Oil… surely though this enough to at least prompt you to give it a try! The recipe below can be used in a frittata, folded into a grain salad or in a hash with bacon!!! It’s a great staple to have nearby to add the “green” into your.
PREP: 5 MINS / COOK: 20-25 MINS / EASY / SERVES: 4
2 small heads of broccoli, cut into florets with some stalk attached, or 1 medium acorn squash, seeds removed, cut into ½-inch slices
2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, warmed to liquefy if needed
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- Preheat oven to 220°
- Toss vegetables with oil on a rimmed baking sheet to coat
- Season with salt and pepper
- Roast until deep golden brown and tender, 20–25 minutes
- Let cool slightly, then toss with nutritional yeast
We hope you enjoy these, both for yourselves and any friends and family who need some help. Combined with a good water intake and some love and attention i’m sure recovery will be faster and more pleasant.