*Guest Post* Start a food fight with the common cold!

Hello Everyone!

Let me start off by introducing myself. My name is Dr. Tasha Mumby, ND and I am a naturopathic doctor working at QNC. I started practicing at QNC this past November and I am loving helping people achieve happier, healthier lives through naturopathic medicine!

Today’s blog post is all about food! Specifically, how food can help you prevent getting a nasty winter cold. We have all suffered through a cold, but this year, we seem to be dealing with a few pretty strong bugs. I am seeing people suffering with residual symptoms even a month after the initial infection. This means it’s time to get smart and prevent those colds from taking hold at all!

Try out these three easy, food-based tricks for preventing the common cold!

1) Say no to your sweet tooth!

We all know that the holiday season is usually full of sweet treats, but did you know that sugar can directly suppress your immune system? Research has shown that consuming simple sugars significantly decreases your immune cells abilities to kill bacteria. This means, that in order to give our immune systems the best chance to fight off an infection, we need to get rid of the leftover holiday treats that may still be lingering around, and focus on choosing nutritious foods!

*Tip! Choose natural sugars if your craving something sweet. I love this Coconut Energy Ball recipe which features dates rather than refined sugar(You even get a little chocolate too!)

2) Play with herbs and spices!

Did you know that many of the herbs and spices you cook with have great botanical medicine properties. For example, turmeric, a spice used in Indian cuisine, has great anti-inflammatory properties. Not only do adding spices to your meals make them more flavourful and fun, but they also help support your immune system

*Tip! Try adding warming spices like ginger, or cinnamon to support your digestive system. This is a great Chicken Curry recipe, and non-meat eaters can always substitute chickpeas for the protein source!

3) Consume immune boosting foods!

Everyone has heard the old saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”, but did you know there are some even better choices to help you stay healthy this winter? I always say the more veggies the better, but when we talk about boosting your immune system there are a few key foods to consider. Garlic has great antimicrobial properties, meaning it can help your immune system kill off any bacteria that may sneak in. British researchers gave 146 people either a placebo or a garlic extract for 12 weeks; the garlic takers were two-thirds less likely to catch a cold. Other great immune boosting foods include raw honey, onions, and mushrooms.

*Tip! Make up a a jar of Honey, Garlic, Onion Syrup and keep it in your fridge. That way when you start to feel run-down, or like you might be getting sick, you can take a spoonful(or two!) right away!

Now I would love to hear from you! What is one food choice you could make to fight off the common cold? Leave a comment below and Doctor as Teacher Tuesday will be back next week with another edition!


Sanchez A, Reeser JL, Lau HS, Yahiku PY, Willard RE, McMillan PJ, Cho SY, Magie AR, Register UD. Role of sugars in human neutrophilic phagocytosis. The American journal of clinical nutrition. 1973 Nov 1;26(11):1180-4

Bayan L, Koulivand PH, Gorji A. Garlic: a review of potential therapeutic effects. Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine. 2014;4(1):1-14.

Gupta SC, Patchva S, Aggarwal BB. Therapeutic Roles of Curcumin: Lessons Learned from Clinical Trials. The AAPS Journal. 2013;15(1):195-218. doi:10.1208/s12248-012-9432-8.

Comments from our readers


  • Mary

    February 20, 2018

    How long will it keep if refrigerated?

  • Tasha Mumby

    February 26, 2018

    Hello Mary! I assume you are referring to the Honey, Garlic, Onion syrup? If so, the mixture will keep in a sealed jar in your refrigerator for about 6 months!

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