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10 Foods That Will Help You Fight a Summer Cold

Ugh! Summer colds are the worst. Your friends are on the beach—but you're stuck indoors, with a stuffy nose, scratchy throat and cough. Here's what to eat to get over that cold.

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Mix of fresh ripe citrus fruits in a bowl in a centre of blue wooden backgroundUfaBizPhoto/Shutterstock

Citrus Fruits

Any time you want to boost your immunity, vitamin C is a great place to start. So stock up on citrus fruits—oranges, grapefruits, lemons, limes and tangerines, for example—to see you through this summer cold.

Bonus: Is there anything better than glass of fresh-squeezed orange juice on a hot summer day? Here’s how to choose ripe oranges.

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Bunch of fresh green broccoli on brown plate over wooden backgroundmama_mia/Shutterstock


Another great source of vitamin C is the cruciferous vegetable broccoli, which is also high in antioxidants, omega 3s and anti-inflammatory components. You’ll get benefits any way you eat it, whether roasted, steamed or sautéed. For maximum cold-fighting power, however, eat it raw.

See how broccoli can help prevent cancer, too.

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Hot Spinach Apple SaladTaste of Home


Summer salads are so ubiquitous, they’re almost cliche—but for good reason! When you want a refreshing meal that’s also good for fighting illness, salads are a great choice. Even better, make that salad with spinach to enjoy high vitamin C levels. Find all kinds of delicious salad recipes to try.

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fresh blueberriesMaraZe/Shutterstock


The rich antioxidant content of blueberries makes them a great choice any time you have a cold. But this is even truer in summer when the fruits are in season. You can eat them on their own, throw them into smoothies and find fresh ideas for turning them into summer meals with this roundup of blueberry salad recipes.

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Different types of tomatoes, dark background.Nina Firsova/Shutterstock


Like blueberries, tomatoes are a seasonal summer food with lots of health benefits. High in both vitamin C and the carotenoid lycopene, tomatoes give your body added fuel to fight illness.

Want to know how to choose the right type of tomato for a recipe? Read this to learn more.

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Garlic Cloves and Bulb in vintage wooden bowlMarian Weyo/Shutterstock


Turns out there’s more to love about garlic than Italian food. It can help ease sickness, too. That’s because this fragrant ingredient contains allicin, a substance that the body converts into health-boosting compounds. In other words, garlic may be able to stimulate your immune system and help you get better faster.

Have you ever heard a better reason to try our recipes for garlic lovers?

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Greek yogurt in a glass jars with spoons on wooden backgroundmama_mia/Shutterstock


Rich in probiotics and vitamin D, yogurt is another great tool in your arsenal against summer sickness. The probiotics help fight off infections and encourage healthy digestion, and the vitamin D strengthens your overall resistance to illness.

Incorporate more of the gut-healthy probiotics of yogurt into your routine with these recipes.

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Tea being poured into tea cupbitt24/Shutterstock


Many different types of tea are good for cold season, especially when you’re combating a scratchy throat or cough. Soothe your sore throat with the spicy and anti-inflammatory benefits of ginger tea, or sip your way toward healing through the soothing, infection-fighting power of ginseng tea, for example.

Learn more about the mind-blowing health benefits of tea.

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Baked Cheddar Eggs & PotatoesTaste of Home


Because their yolks are high in vitamin D, eggs are another great cold-fighting choice. Vitamin D can both strengthen and regulate the immune system, moving your body toward feeling better faster.

Bored with your usual breakfast? Check out this roundup of healthy egg breakfast ideas.

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Pumpkin seeds in blue bowl over wooden background close upOksana Mizina/Shutterstock

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkins may be a fall food, traditionally speaking, but their seeds are another cold-fighting summer staple. That’s because pumpkin seeds (and pepitas) are high in zinc, which is vital for a properly functioning metabolism and immunity. Snack on them while you’re nursing your symptoms, and know you’re helping your body heal.

Want relief right now? Here are 77 comforting foods to eat when you have a cold.

Shanna Mallon
Shanna Mallon is an experienced copywriter and food blogger with a master's degree in Writing. She likes tested recipes, organized refrigerators and the pleasure of a good bite.