Eat: Moroccan lentil soup made with spices such as turmeric and cinnamon. Cynthia Sass, author of “Slim Down Now: Shed Pounds and Inches with Pulses – The New Superfood, says that “this meal is free of potential headache triggers like dairy, cured meats, nuts, and chocolate. Plus, it also doesn’t require chewing, which can aggravate a headache.” This soup also delivers a good dose of protein, anti-inflammatory spices, and magnesium – which helps blood vessels to relax and ease headaches.
When You Have Sinus Pressure
Eat: Anything that is spicy – the heat in chili peppers can help clear up types of sinus inflammation, according to some research from the University of Cincinnati Academic Health Center.
When You Have a Sore Throat
Eat: Soup made with a hot, thin broth (either chicken or vegetable-stock base), with herbs, garlic, and vegetables; plus hot green tea with honey. For starters, both hot liquids will help drain congestion. Sass explains that “the garlic is anti-inflammatory and immune-supporting, the veggies provide nutrients for healing, and honey has been shown to help ease the pain from a sore throat.”
When You Have Nausea
Eat: Sass suggests bananas, steamed rice, ginger tea, and applesauce. Each of these foods is easy to keep down and tends to soothe the digestive system. Opt for tea bags with real ginger in them. Or better yet, steep some of the fresh herbs in hot water. A study from the University of Rochester found that as little as a quarter of a teaspoon of ginger cut nausea by 40% in chemotherapy patients.
Eat: Oatmeal topped with fiber-rich fruit and a mug of hot water with lemon. The goal here is to get your stool moving along nicely. “The fiber from the oats and fruit helps to soften stool. The drink will help stimulate your digestive muscles to contract and move waste through,” Sass explains.
When You Have Fatigue
Eat: There isn’t a one-size-fits-all remedy for this one since the fix depends largely on the cause of fatigue. Your best bet? A leafy green salad with chopped vegetables and grilled salmon to give you a boost of minerals, vitamins, and omega 3s, which will, in turn, increase your energy. If your fatigue is from a lack of sleep, avoid caffeine. Sass explains that “it may seem counter-intuitive, but the temporary Band-Aid of coffee or an energy drink will only provide a brief false sense of energy, usually followed by even more intense fatigue, then trouble sleeping, which perpetuates the cycle.”
When You Have Menstrual Cramps
Drink: A pot of hot ginger tea with a little honey and lemon. A study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that ginger was just as effective in relieving menstrual cramp pain as ibuprofen. To add to this, proper hydration can help to reduce tension in certain muscles that contribute to menstrual cramping.
When You Have Diarrhea
Drink: Sass suggests a sports drink or Pedialyte. “The top goal is replacing fluids and electrolytes while diarrhea is active,” she says. Once the diarrhea stops, continue to re-hydrate, but start eating foods that easy to digest, like bananas and brown rice. If you eat your usual fare, it can overstimulate digestive muscles or trigger unwanted irritation or inflammation, she adds.
When You Have Stress
Drink: a combo of chamomile and mint herbal teas. Refill indefinitely until you feel the hot drink calm your nervous system. You should avoid anything that is high in fats or in sugar, which a study in the journal Psychoneuroendocrinology found can exacerbate other health problems that accompany stress, such as oxidative damage and the accumulation of abdominal fat, which can make you feel even worse than you do.