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by Sue Gilbert, MS, Nutritionist

Foods That Stimulate the Immune System

Yogurt: Prevents colds and reduces hay fever symptoms. Must contain live cultures of lactobacillus bulgarius or bifidobacteria. Garlic: Increases immune system cell potency. Fruits and vegetables: Go for those high in beta-carotene (carrots, cantaloupe, spinach, broccoli, sweet potatoes, apricots, and pumpkin) and vitamin C (citrus fruits, broccoli, melon, red peppers and strawberries). Zinc: Helps wounds heal more quickly. Eat oysters, lean beef, pork, turkey, or lamb for zinc. Brown rice, salmon, and yogurt also contain zinc.

Foods for Colds, Flu and Hay Fever

Chicken soup: Helps move mucous. Hot and spicy food: Acts like an expectorant to thin out secretions of colds, allergies or asthma. Garlic: Helps kill viruses and bacteria. Liquids: Keeps mucous membranes hydrated and healthy.

Foods for Constipation

Fiber: Add whole grain foods (especially cereal bran), pears, dried fruit, berries, peas and cooked dry beans. Try honey bran muffins with raisins or prune bits. Fruit juice: Cut back on apple, pear and grape juice; the high sugar levels can be hard to digest. Prunes: Try a glass of room-temperature prune juice on an empty stomach early in the morning. Fluids: Liquids are key.

Foods for Diarrhea

Starchy, bland foods: Try bananas, rice, applesauce and toast (BRAT). Small, frequent meals are best. Avoid bulky or gaseous foods. Fluids: Avoid milk (especially if lactose intolerant) and sugary drinks. Try thick potato soup or a thin rice cereal (porridge). Yogurt: Helps prevent and kill diarrhea-causing bacteria.

Foods for Nausea

Gingersnaps, ginger ale, and ginger tea may help alleviate mild nausea, without any side affects. Drink clear fluids slowly, avoiding juices, especially citrus. Try diluted sports drinks or broth.

-- Old Git (, October 30, 1999



Hello! Thanks for the great post. I've an addition for live & active cultured yogurt though:

It is great for healing the stomach lining and intestines after severe food poisoning. YOGURT DOES NOT CURE FOOD POISONING, it only helps to repair the stomach and intestine lining if it was damaged by the bacteria. This comes from personal experience:

Two years ago, while on a trip, I had a severe case of food poisoning (severe cramps, diarrhea and passed blood). By the time I was able to get to a doctor, there was nothing they could do, my doctor told me all I could do was wait it out. I suffered a few days longer with dizziness, clamminess and stomach pains.

I finally went to the store and bought yogurt. As soon as I ate it, the pains died down. It took a few days for my stomach lining to finally heal, but it was much faster than what my doctor told me (without yogurt).

A stronger version of yogurt can be bougt at health food stores in capsule form - it's call Acidodolphilus. It is highly effective.

-- Deb (, October 30, 1999.

Here's another one for the immune system:

CINAMMON has been proven to kill E.Coli dead, in laboratory tests. There is a lot of research now into essntial oils as thereapeutic and medicinals -- aromatherapy is a very INADEQUATE name for it all. I bleive Jeff Rense's site had an article on cinnamon a month or two ago. Perhaps someone gifted can locate it and post a link.

-- Roch Steinbach (, October 30, 1999.


Spice Up Your Health Study Finds Cinnamon May Kill E.coli in Apple Juice

C H I C A G O, Aug. 6  Adding cinnamon to unpasteurized apple juice may kill E.coli 0157:H7, the bacteria that causes a food-borne illness that sickens an estimated 10,000 to 20,000 Americans each year. Microbiologists at Kansas State University inoculated apple juice samples with about one million E.coli bacteria  roughly 100 times the number typically found in contaminated food  and found that one teaspoon of cinnamon killed 99.5 percent of the bacteria in three days at room temperature. When the same amount of cinnamon was combined with either 0.1 percent sodium benzoate or potassium sorbate, which are preservatives approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, E.coli was reduced to an undetectable level. Cinnamon contains a compound that has the ability to kill bacteria, Daniel Y.C. Fung, professor of food science at Kansas State, said in a telephone interview. It has natural killing power, said Fung, who oversaw the research on spices. We are not promoting that you should not heat your food properly, but this extra help from the kitchen can spice up your health.

Illness Killed Denver Toddler The research was presented in Chicago last week at an annual meeting of the Institute of Food Technologists, a nonprofit group composed of scientists and food industry professionals. Most people recover completely from E.coli exposure within a week, but some develop a form of kidney failure, and an estimated 50 to 100 Americans die from the illness each year. Apple juice tainted with E.coli, which causes bloody diarrhea and can be deadly, was linked to a 1996 outbreak which killed a 16-month-old Denver girl and sickened 66 others. This research indicates that the use of cinnamon alone and in combination with preservatives in apple juice, besides its flavoring effect, might reduce and control the number of E.coli 0157:H7, lead researcher Erdogan Ceylan said in a statement. Cinnamon may help protect consumers against food-borne bacteria that may be in unpasteurized juices, he said.

Smaller Companies Dont Pasteurize The FDA in April estimated that there are between 16,000 and 48,000 cases of juice-related illnesses each year in the United States. The agency proposed new rules earlier this year that would require processors to take steps to make sure juice that has not been pasteurized is as safe as pasteurized juice, which is heated to a temperature that kills the bacteria. The FDA said about 98 percent of U.S. fruit juices are pasteurized, but the rest  typically made by smaller companies or orchards  is not. If cinnamon can knock out E.coli 0157:H7, one of the most virulent food-borne microorganisms that exists today, it will certainly have antimicrobial effects on other common food-borne bacteria such as salmonella and campylobacter, Fung said. Last year, the same researchers added various spices to raw ground beef and sausage. They found that cinnamon, clove and garlic were the most powerful in killing E.coli.

-- Old Git (, October 30, 1999.

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