Sam Wood’s immunity-boosting meals

4th June 2020 | Eativity editors

“Let food be thy medicine”, said the Ancient Greek physician Hippocrates. He was really onto something. The foods you choose to eat can help your body to fight illness and can even help you to avoid getting sick in the first place. So help your body to stay strong and healthy – bolster your immune system with these easy, tasty and satisfying recipes from health and fitness expert Sam Wood.

“Our immune system needs certain nutrients to function at the best of its ability,” Wood says. “When we eat real, nutritious foods, we help it do its job. On the other end of the spectrum, if we’re loading up on unhealthy, nutrient-void foods, we’re placing further stress on our body and giving it extra work to do. This means it can’t focus its resources where it needs them.”

Woods top immunity-boosting foods? Raw garlic, ginger, lemon, Manuka or raw honey, fresh herbs and turmeric. Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin – it’s the orange-yellow component of turmeric and it’s been found to boost the immune system, even among people with immune disorders.

I love to add turmeric to soups and curries, even scrambled eggs,” Woods says. Here, he shares two of his favourite turmeric-spiced recipes.  

Golden turmeric breakfast bowl

Serves: 1

You’ll need:
2 tbsp almonds (raw and unsalted) roughly chopped
1/2 tbsp pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
1 tsp chia seeds
1/4 cup Greek yoghurt
1/4 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 tsp turmeric (ground or fresh)
1/2 tsp cinnamon (ground)
1/2 tsp rice malt syrup

Method:
1. Add almonds and pepitas to a small, dry frying pan and cook for 2-3 minutes until they’re lightly toasted.
2. Add yoghurt to a small bowl and mix through the turmeric and cinnamon. Top with the toasted almonds and pepitas, chia seeds, blueberries and drizzle with rice malt syrup.

Golden coconut chicken soup

Serves: 1

You’ll need:
140ml coconut milk (from carton)
190ml water
1/2 tsp turmeric (ground or fresh)
1/2 tsp ginger (fresh) minced
125g chicken breast
25g brown rice noodles (vermicelli)
1 zucchini peeled into ribbons or spiralized
1 cup silverbeet, shredded

Method:
1. Place coconut milk, water turmeric and ginger in a pan over a low heat; stir to combine.
2. Add chicken into the saucepan and cook for 10-15 minutes or until cooked through. Once chicken is cooked, remove from the liquid and shred.
3. Place chicken back in the saucepan and plunge vermicelli noodles into the soup until softened, about 2-3 minutes.
4. Remove from the heat and stir in the zucchini and silverbeet until wilted.
5. Ladle soup into a bowl and serve.

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