Load up on these 5 immunity-boosting foods now

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Staying healthy is a matter of keeping your immune system in tip-top condition — other than exercising and giving your body adequate rest, there are some foods you can eat to boost your immunity naturally.

Here are the top five foods that you should eat more of, along with some of our favourite recipes.

1. GARLIC

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It's the allicin in garlic that can help to fight those pesky viruses. Add a couple of cloves a day to your food to support your natural defences.

TRY: LINGUINE WITH GARLIC PRAWNS

Whip up this really satisfying pasta dish made with fresh linguine and juicy king prawns, spiced with garlic and red chillies.

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TRY: SPICED GARLIC BEEF STIR-FRY

Ready in minutes, whipping up this delicious spiced garlic beef stir-fry is really easy with this simple recipe.

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2. OLIVE OIL

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Research reveals that antibacterial olive oil can bolster immunity, and even help fight common diseases like cold and flu viruses. Try it as a supplement to your salads.

TRY: CHICKEN, APPLE AND CANDIED PECAN SALAD

Experience a burst of several flavours in this chicken, apple and candied pecan salad, and drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.

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TRY: MINESTRONE

Packed with healthy ingredients, this Minestrone soup recipe makes a nutritious one-pot meal. This one uses risoni but you can use pasta shells or macaroni.

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3. MANUKA HONEY

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A great little immunity booster bursting with energising enzymes, vitamins and minerals. Eat a spoonful a day straight, or stir it into yoghurt or drinks like smoothies.

TRY: THAI VEGGIE CROQUETTE WITH HONEY CILANTRO CHUTNEY

One of the dishes taught at Domestic Diva Cooking Masterclass 2017 at Allspice Institute, these moreish croquettes are the perfect starters for your next party!

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TRY: HONEY SESAME CHICKEN PARCELS

Keep your meal low calorie by wrapping the Honey Sesame Chicken in lettuce.

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4. GINGER

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This powerful pungent root is such a good flu deterrent that people like to boil and drink it. Use it in teas and soups, or in dishes to add a flavour punch.

TRY: TWICE-COOKED ASIAN PORK BELLY WITH STEAMED GINGER RICE

Succulent pork belly paired with the sharpness of steamed ginger rice makes for a tasty lunch main course or a satisfying dinner meal.

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TRY: GINGER AND SALMON POKE BOWL

This classic Hawaiian dish is perfect for a quick and healthy lunch that will leave you feeling satisfied.

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5. BLACK OR GREEN TEA

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It's an immunity must-drink. One study revealed that those who drank five cups of tea a day had more interferons (proteins produced as part of the immune response) in their blood than those who drank other hot drinks.

TRY: TEA-SMOKED TROUT SALAD

Try this interesting technique of cooking trout by using the smoke of sugar rice and tea. Serve with a Chinese-style fruit and vegetable salad.

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This article was first published in The Singapore Women's Weekly