Comfort Foods that Also Boost The Immune System

Posted by Dr. Payson Flattery on Thursday, October 16, 2014

Author: Beth Jacobi, Acupuncturist and Nutritional Therapy Practitioner at CIM

As we transition into fall, with shorter days and cooler weather, is easy to stay healthy with a little extra relaxation and good nutrition.  Here is a warming and nutritious recipe to ward off colds and keep the immune system strong.

Butternut Squash with Cinnamon

1 medium sized butternut squash

2 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 dash of sea salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Split and seed the butternut squash then grease its skin with butter or coconut oil and place it flesh-side down in a baking dish.

Add about one cup of water to the casserole dish and roast the squash until tender and easily pierced with a fork, about forty to sixty minutes.

Remove the squash from the oven and allow it to cool.

Spoon out the bright orange flesh from the squash and place it in a food processor or stand mixer along with two tablespoons butter, one teaspoon ground cinnamon and a dash of sea salt.

Process mixture until well-blended and smooth. Serve warm. Add pecans, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds on top.

Nutritional benefits:

Squash:  The rich orange color signals an abundance of carotenoids, including beta-carotene (which your body automatically converts to vitamin A). Carotenoids are known to benefit the eyes, skin, lungs and immune system.  Squash also has antioxidant-rich vitamin C, folate, potassium, fiber, and vitamins B6 and K.

Cinnamon: from the dried brown bark of the cinnamon tree, is one of the oldest spices known to humankind. This fragrant, warm and sweet herb was mentioned in one of the earliest books on Chinese botanical medicine, dating back to 2700 B.C.  Cinnamon Twig Decoction (Gui Zhi Tang) is an ancient Chinese Herbal formula which is still used today to treat a cold, and regulate the “wei qi” or immune system.

Butter: contains fat soluble vitamins A, D, and K, which are key for immune system function, and butyrate which supports intestinal health and has anti-inflammatory properties.  The fat in butter helps the body absorb the fat soluble vitamins and carotenoids.

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