Your body has its very own natural ways of fighting off colds, and you can help your hard-working defenses by feeding it the right nutrients. Juicing is an easy way to give your body tons of vitamins, natural anti-inflammatories, antioxidants, and minerals when you are sick, without burdening it with the work of digestion.
These seven fresh juice recipes for colds have the nutrients your immune system needs to keep you well and to get you feeling better sooner if you do come down with a cold.
How to make an immune-boosting juice
There’s no special formula for getting the right green juicing combination. There are some basic principles to apply, and after that, it’s all a matter of taste.
You will need a base (veggies and fruits that produce a lot of liquid—cucumbers, celery, carrots, apples), a vitamin booster (beets, leafy greens, fruits), a superfood to enrich the juice with extra vitamins and minerals (this one is optional), and a flavorful ingredient (aromatic herbs, spices).
Here are some of the main juicing ingredients for fighting the cold:
Beets, carrots, cucumbers, celery, kale, and spinach are all powerful antioxidants with liver detox effects that help to rid your body of free-radicals and strengthen your immune system.
All of the fruits, including apples, citrus fruits (lemons, grapefruit, lime), pomegranate, berries, and many more, are loaded with vitamins and hydrating fluids, which your body cells consume in high amounts when your immune system is in flu-alert.
The right proportions of these ingredients vary on what type of nutrient you wish to feed your body and how the combination tastes. You can add an apple, orange, or carrots to sweeten up the earthy taste of the beetroot if you want to deeply nourish your body with minerals and antioxidants, or you can make a citrus-only juice for that vitamin C kick.
7 Cold-Buster Juice Recipes
These recipes are perfectly adapted to the season, as they’re packed with fresh veggies that you can easily find in autumn at any farmers’ market (beetroot, butternut squash, cucumbers) as well as fresh fruits and superfoods from your organic grocery store.
1. Beet Detox Juice
Beets contain a highly active phytonutrient pigment called betalain, with powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detox effects [source]. Combine them with the vitamin C from apples and spinach, and you’ve got yourself a fantastic cold- and flu-fighting elixir.
—1 large beetroot
—1 green apple
—1 handful fresh spinach leaves
2. Pink Power Pomegranate Citrus Energy Juice
Grapefruits and lemons are packed with vitamin C, which is known to reduce cold symptoms and activate cells in the immune system [source], while the glucose in pomegranate will give your brain a boost of energy first thing in the morning.
Add kale for even more antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects from its health-promoting phytochemicals [source].
—The seeds from one large pomegranate
—1 bunch of fresh kale
3. Sun Salutation Yellow Juice
A delicious cocktail of cold-fighting ingredients. Butternut squash nourishes with beta carotene and essential fatty acids, both with antioxidant effects.
Ginger has antiviral actions [source] and promotes healthy sweating, which can be helpful during respiratory infections, and lemon adds valuable vitamin C. A dose of turmeric provides super antimicrobial benefits that help your body to fight foreign invaders [source].
—1 medium butternut squash, peeled and seeds removed
—2-inch piece of ginger, peeled
—2 teaspoons turmeric powder
4. Vitamin C Boost Juice
The key to keeping colds and flu at bay is to infuse your cells with fresh nutrients to ensure they get enough fuel for supporting an immune system that functions at its best. During cold season, look for ingredients high in immune-boosting superstar vitamin C, like lemons, parsley and apples.
—1 handful kale
—1 apple, any variety
—1 handful parsley, fresh
—2 lemons, juiced
Juice all the ingredients and drink straight away.
5. Antioxidant-Rich Juice
Dark leafy greens, red and purple fruits and veggies (especially beets and carrots) are a great source of antioxidants, especially beta-carotene and betalains, involved in the natural detoxification of our cells, energy production and immunity support.
—1 small beet
—4 celery stalks
—½-inch piece fresh ginger root
—Handful of parsley
—1 lemon, juiced
Fresh juice is best consumed immediately. If needed, you can keep it in the refrigerator in an airtight glass container for up to 24 hours.
6. Lemon Ginger Echinacea Juice
Echinacea (also known as purple coneflower) was once widely used by Native Americans and is now used by millions of consumers worldwide to support a healthy immune system.
—¼ cup fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
—2–3 lemons, juiced
—1 cup water
—1–2 tablespoons Manuka honey (add more or less to taste)
—Echinacea tincture (refer to instructions on the bottle for accurate dosage)
—Cheesecloth or a fine-mesh strainer
Combine ginger, lemon juice, water, and honey in the base of a high-speed blender. Blend on high until smooth. Pour the mixture through a mesh strainer to remove any leftover bits of ginger. Add echinacea and stir well. Can be served warm or over ice.
Note: I love the taste of ginger with hardly any added sweetness, but not everyone does. Feel free to add more water and honey until the flavor is to your liking.
7. Garlic Immunity Boosting Shot
Garlic abounds with naturally occurring sulfur compounds, amino acids, and trace minerals, which nourish the body. If you’re not a big fan of garlic-breath (um, who is?), supplements are a great way to enjoy the benefits of garlic without eating it by the clove.
—1 tablespoon olive oil
—1 garlic clove, juiced or minced
—½ lemon juiced
—1 tablespoon ginger, juice or minced
—Pinch of cayenne
Mix all the ingredients and drink immediately.
Before you go...
Juice recipes are a great way to up your veggie intake so don't be afraid of trying new combinations for summer or testing out fall flavors. If you're just getting started with juicing and not sure what vegetables (or fruits) work best, check out our Juicing 101 post with 3 easy recipes for juicing newbies.
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Gina Jansheski, a licensed, board-certified pediatrician who has been practicing for more than 20 years. Learn more about Hello Glow's medical reviewers here. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.253