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Shop the Farmers Market for Natural Flu-Fighting Foods!

This month’s online¬†AARP Bulletin¬†featured nine flu-fighting foods: black-eyed peas, tea, yogurt, almonds, chicken soup (thanks to a compound called carnosine. You need to consume chicken soup throughout your illness to reap its benefit, says a 2012 study), salmon, and…carrots, tomatoes and mushrooms. So read on to learn how carrots, tomatoes, and mushrooms, plus several other vegetables, all available at the Media Farmers Market, boost our immune systems!

CarrotsMushroomsTomatoes 10.16.13Carrots

They’re rich in beta-carotene, which your body uses to ward off respiratory infections. Other good sources are dark green vegetables, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and winter squash.

Tomatoes
Vitamin C-rich tomatoes boost the body’s natural defense system in the same way their citrusy relatives do. One medium tomato provides 40 percent of your daily vitamin C, so have a glass of tomato juice at lunch and treat yourself to pasta with tomato sauce for dinner.

Mushrooms
These powerhouses increase the body’s resistance to viral infections by boosting the activity of natural killer cells, a vital part of the immune system. Mushrooms are rich in selenium, low levels of which can increase the risk of developing a severe flu.

These excerpts were taken from this month’s online AARP Bulletin. For info on the other six, go to aarp.org.

Vegetable Soup
This recipe from the cookbook, Linda’s Kitchen, includes carrots and tomatoes. Add chopped mushrooms for a selenium boost.

Serves: 6-8

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 leeks, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch celery, chopped
  • 4 large carrots, sliced
  • 1/2 small head white cabbage, shredded
  • 3/4 pound new potatoes, cubed
  • 1 teaspoon each chopped fresh thyme and rosemary
  • 5 pints vegetable stock
  • 8 medium tomatoes, chopped, or 1 can (16 ounces) crushed tomatoes with juices
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon (optional)
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan and lightly brown the onion, leeks, garlic, and celery for 5 minutes. Add the carrots, cabbage, and potatoes and stir well. Stir in the herbs. Cover with the stock and bring to a boil. Cover and let simmer until the vegetables are tender, stirring and testing occasionally.

Add the tomatoes and tarragon (if using) and stir them in. Season to taste and heat through.

Enjoy!

 

For a Complete List of Media Farmers Market Vendors, Click Here!

 

See you tomorrow at the Market!

 

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