It’s that time of year again, everyone around you is coughing, sneezing & sniffing & you’re thinking it’s only a matter of time before you succumb too – BUT there are things that you can do to improve your odds of avoiding it.

The foods below, whilst helping your immune system, can’t actually prevent you catching a cold but it has been shown that they can boost your immune system and also shorten the length of time you are ill.

Citrus fruits are high in Vitamin CUp your Vitamin C

Vitamin C is great at supporting your immune system.

Citrus fruits such as oranges and pineapple are packed with of Vitamin C but so are dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach and chard. Peppers and broccoli are also good options.

Colourful fruit & vegEat colourful fruit & vegetables

Beetroot, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, oranges & mangos are rich in beta carotene which the body converts to Vitamin A.

Vitamin A looks after the lining of our nose & lungs which inturn help fight infection.


Garlic (& onions) contain anti-microbial oils which may be of use against infections, and they’re also good at promoting the healthy bacteria in your gut.

Other benefits include reducing colesterol levels and improving blood pressure, quite a little wonder food!

Porridge OatsGet your oats

Grains like oats and barley are rich in a water-soluble fibre that not only keeps you feeling full but also contains a mild immune system enhancer.

Often described as the King of breakfast, porridge is a really good start to the day, add a dollop of honey (high in anti-oxidants) for extra benefits.

SunlightSunlight (Vitamin D)

OK, I know you can’t eat sunlight, but low light levels at this time of the year mean our Vitamin D levels drop. Vitamin D is important for  general health and lack of it you means you could be at greater risk of resiratory infections. So it’s a good idea to top up levels by including oily fish (like salmon), eggs and mushrooms in your diet.

And lastly, nothing to do with food but…

Washing your hands & Moderate Exercise

Keeping your hands clean & away from your face reduces the risk of picking up anything nasty from phones, door handles, keyboards etc.

Try & keep active as moderate exercise can help the immune system by encouraging the body to produce more white blood cells which defend our systems from illness.

Here in The Canteen we like to serve healthy, filling food ideal for these cold months. Our menu changes daily with a wide selection of food from sandwiches & toasties to hot meals & baked potatoes.

Do come in & see us, if not for a meal then how about a coffee & a lovely piece cake!