In most cases, vitamin C supplements won’t help to prevent colds, according to a study of 20 trials with more than 11,000 people.
Taking the vitamin reduced colds by only 3 per cent, according to the study on the Mayo Clinic’s website.
However, for those under high physical stress, such as marathon runners, the extra vitamin C cut their incidence of colds in half.
Taking vitamin C before the onset of cold symptoms may shorten the duration of symptoms. Meanwhile, chicken soup can speed the recovery of colds. Studies have shown that it can improve the ability of cilia, which are tiny hair-like parts of nasal passages, to protect the body from bacteria and virus, said Ms Alefia Vasanwala, principal dietitian at Mount Elizabeth Hospital.
Plus, a rich chicken broth can provide the body with protein and calcium. It also contains electrolytes, which are especially valuable when one is dehydrated.
Text by Mind & Body, Straits Times. Image: IThinkstock