Foods to Eat When You’re Sick


I don’t normally like Gatorade. Ok, I’m lying – I love the stuff, and most other types of flat, fake-orange beverages. But usually I have the will to resist. Not when I’m sick.

We all have our own food cravings when we’re under the weather. Bob at Slashfood has a likes ginger ale and pizza, while his commenters are big fans of whiskey, ramen noodles and saltines.

Aside from the gatorade, my cravings tend to lean towards the salty/spicy end of the flavor spectrum. Soup, broth, marmite, toast. Here are my picks:

  1. Tea. Especially lemon and honey. Or if I want something salty, plain veggie stock in a mug works.
  2. Soup. Classic comfort food.
  3. Hot pepper. And spicy food in general. I love the stuff, and capsaicin, found in garlic and hot peppers, even helps reduce sinus and nasal congestion.
  4. Bread. Or crackers. Sometime dry and salty.
  5. Orange Soda. I’m not proud of this, but I really like cold, flat orange-flavoured drinks like Gatorade when I’m sick.
  6. Garlic. Garlic is delicious, and it supposedly prevents the common cold.

Sure enough, today’s food log has pretty much featured all of these.

Life Log for April 26, 2009


Bircher muesli with bananas and lemon honey tea

Bircher Muesli with Lemon Tea and a New Read


Short stroll through Abney Park Cemetery

Abney Park Cemetery

I decided it would do me some good to get some fresh air and paracetamol, so I took a slow walk to the grocery store via the lush Abney Park Cemetery. Given the way I’m feeling as I write this now, I have no idea how I had the energy. But I’m glad I did, because it was nice and I even got a few photos in.

Abney Park Cemetery


Yellow split pea soup with garlic-braised spinach and toast

Split Pea Soup with Braised Spinach and Sourdough Bread

Recipe: Yellow Split Pea Soup


Butter beans and pasta with super-garliccy tomato sauce, toast and salad

Pasta and Butter Beans with Tomato Sauce and Salad

6 thoughts on “Foods to Eat When You’re Sick

  1. maris

    Love that picture of oranges!

    When I’m sick I crave carbs, carbs, more carbs and hot, gooey food like mac and cheese! Sooo pretty much exactly what I crave when not sick 🙂

  2. Monica Shaw

    Thanks for your well wishes! Maris, you actually inspired me to make mac and cheese for the first time in ages. It was perfect.

    I’m still recovering from my flu and taking antibiotics for a kidney infections. Since I wrote this, all of the foods I mentioned here went out the door (I almost feel like I should rewrite this post!). Instead, I’m left with the weirdest cravings…

    Noodles. Noodles. Noodles.
    Croissants (dipped in milk with raspberry jam).
    Ice cream.

    And terror of terrors, the thought of most fruits and vegetables makes me nauseous. Even bircher muesli is off-putting. =( I can’t deal with anything raw. Today I ate green vegetables for the first time since Monday – PEAS (with a small handful of arugula, wilted after tossing with my cooked pasta). I am also starting to think about berries, but all citrus fruits are a no go.

    I’m also thinking of all the foods I want to make when I’m better. Usually I’d be dreaming of dal and chickpeas, but at the moment, my mind’s been on cannelloni, crepes, blintzes, and apple pie. What’s going on??

    My theory… I eat soooo many vegetables normally, that my body is finally rebelling in order to satisfy a weird biological craving for dairy, fat and carbs. Oh well, at least I’m not craving meat.

  3. Evita

    Hi Monica

    Sorry to hear you are not well. I will share something with you regarding health and diet. Ever since I have changed to an all natural plant based diet with no refined sugar or alcohol whatsoever, I no longer get sick with anything. I didn’t get anything serious before, but there were the usual 2 colds per year.

    Seeing as you eat really healthy, generally speaking from your pics and food day logs, the only other reason that I can think of why you are sick, is either stress or built up acid from the past. I cannot remember if you ever wrote anything about the acid-alkaline approach to health, but it is a key component of healthy and disease-free living. Just making sure pretty much that our bodies are alkaline and most of what we eat each day falls more or less into the 70% alkaline and 30% acid substances.

    Anyhow wishing you a speedy recovery!

  4. Sirena

    I am sick right now and I have been craving mcdonalds and Ice cream all day long but I cant get any of that because we dont hve any of that.


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