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What to Eat & Drink When You Have the Flu

Battling the flu can be rough, and if you're reading this, chances are you're not feeling your best. But we're here to help you through it. Nourishing your body with the right foods and drinks can make a world of difference in your recovery. So let's talk about what to eat and drink when you have the flu.

Hydration is key.

First things first, let's talk about hydration. When you have the flu, your body loses fluids due to fever, sweating and mucus. Replenishing those fluids is crucial to help your body fight off the flu virus and prevent dehydration. So here is what you should drink when you have the flu:

  • Water: This is a no-brainer. Sip on water throughout the day to stay hydrated.

  • Herbal tea: Warm herbal teas like chamomile, peppermint or ginger can soothe a sore throat and provide hydration.

  • Broth: Chicken or vegetable broth not only keeps you hydrated, but also provides essential electrolytes that help replenish what you've lost.

Choose nutrient-rich foods.

Now let's talk about food. When you're battling the flu, eating may be the last thing on your mind. But fueling your body with nutritious foods can help support your immune system and aid in recovery. Here is what to eat when you have the flu:

  • Chicken soup: It's not just an old wives' tale. Chicken soup is packed with vitamins, minerals and protein to help boost your immune system and provide much-needed nourishment.

  • Fruits and vegetables: Opt for easy-to-digest fruits like bananas, applesauce and melons. Cooked vegetables like carrots, sweet potatoes and spinach are also gently on the stomach and rich in essential nutrients.

  • Whole grains: Choose whole grains like brown rice, oatmeal or whole wheat toast to provide sustained energy and fiber.

Avoid caffeine and sugar.

While certain foods can help ease flu symptoms, others can make them worse. Avoiding these foods can help prevent further discomfort when you are sick.

  • Fatty or fried foods: These can be heavy on the stomach and may exacerbate nausea or indigestion.

  • Sugary foods and drinks: While tempting, sugary snacks and drinks can suppress immune function and worsen inflammation.

  • Alcohol and caffeine: Both alcohol and caffeine can dehydrate your body even more, so it's best to steer clear until you're feeling better.

Listen to your body.

Lastly, remember to listen to your body. If you're not feeling up to eating a full meal, that's okay. Focus on staying hydrated and consuming small, nutrient-rich snacks throughout the day. Don't hesitate to reach out to your primary care provider if you have any concerns or if your symptoms persist or worsen.

Remember, the flu won't last forever, and with proper rest and nourishment, you'll be back on your feet in no time. Take care of yourself, and we wish you a speedy recovery!


About Odessa Medical Enterprises

We are the office of Dr. Khavar Dar, MD and Janette Ornelas, FNP-C, providing pulmonary, critical care and primary care to patients in Odessa, TX. At Odessa Medical Enterprises, we believe that compassion is crucial for effective treatment. Together, we consider it our mission to serve our community and beyond with the utmost care.


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