Recovery Foods!

I’m finally feeling like myself again after a week of flu.   I’m still tired and the cough will hang around for a while, but I feel like me again.  Who knows?  Maybe I can even do a little stitching tomorrow?

You’re all so kind, with the good wishes on my last post and the lovely emails you’ve sent me.  Thank you!

I’m desperate to get back on my feet and run around doing stuff again, but I’m terrified to over-do it and earn myself another few days in bed.  I always do that, but not this time.  In addition to taking it easy and sleeping heaps, I’m making sure to eat good foods.

Miso Soup

Miso soup is made from fermented soybeans and has been enjoyed in Japan for centuries.  I keep the house stocked with single-serve packets because even when I’m not sick it’s a fantastic pick-me-up.  It’s easy to drop in a handful of leftover vegetables and some noodles for a simple lunch, which is great when I’m busy.

Click for a delicious and simple recipe

Miso has some fantastic health properties, among them high zinc levels- 47% of your daily intake of zinc can be found in a cup of miso.  Zinc helps promote a strong immune system, just what I need.  Besides, a cup of nice warm soup is quite soothing.


Lately I’ve been reading blog posts here and there about how useless Pinterest is, and what a time suck it is, and how no one ever makes or does the stuff on their pinboards.  Weird.  Sure, sometimes it sucks me in and I hit a “re-pin” loop for a while, and no, I have not tried every recipe for homemade facial peels on my Household Board, but on the whole I have found Pinterest actually enhances my life.

click for source

For example, I started drinking delicious fruit, vegetable and yogurt smoothies again after discovering some fantastic recipes on Pinterest.  This one is amazing, made with yogurt and pineapple and spinach, packed with the kinds of nutrients I need to get better.  Yogurt helps, too- it’s protein and contributes to healthy gut flora, which helps build good health.  I’ve also been known to drop in a few teaspoons of peanut butter, use frozen berries, really the sky is the limit with smoothies.  But I doubt I would have re-discovered my love of smoothies without nudges from my Pinterest feed.

Bacon and Eggs

I never had much of a sweet tooth, but I am very easily tempted by fatty, savory dishes.   I  especially love a plate of bacon and eggs.  It’s easy to cook, easy to eat, delicious, un-pretentious, filling and comforting.

Americans, this is Australian bacon.  I admit it took me a while to get used to it, but now the other stuff looks pretty wimpy by comparison.  I like to fry a piece or two until the fatty pieces are crispy, pull them out and cook my scrambled eggs in the same pan.  Obviously, I don’t eat this for every meal, but the first indication I was feeling better was an overwhelming craving for bacon and eggs after a week of feeling disgusted by food.  Besides, eggs are easy to digest and full of B-vitamins.

Now, please tell me- what do you recommend to help promote good health after being very sick?  What’s your favorite sick person food?  Are vitamin C caplets a godsend or a waste of money?  (I’m undecided but am taking them anyway to cover my bases…)


  1. I am partial to a teaspoon on honey and squeezing half a lemon into boiling water, goes down easy and gives you a bit of energy. It’s been a really bad winter for illnesses, they all seem supercharged at the moment.

    • I was going to say honey! I like my tea black – herbal, rooibos, black, green whatever, I just want it to have tea. The minute I start thinking that some honey in my tea would be nice I’m sure I’m getting sick and my body is craving it. So I’m not sure I’d call it recovery food for me, but it’s certainly something I reach for when I’m sick.

    • oh yes! I love those, too. I make them even when I’m not sick… Lemon and honey… There’s something called Lemsip, I think it’s British but it’s the best for a cold… A little packet of panadol (kinda like tylenol) and lemon flavoring that dissolves in hot water…

  2. So glad you are on the mend. Rest is essential. Flu and like illness actually create an inflammatory response in your body, hence the cough. All fluids help in the recovery process. The electrolyte exchange at the cell level will reduce the inflammation. Ok enough of the background information. Personally, I am a chicken soup girl. My Mother-in-law makes a great “sick soup.” It is more concentrated than regular chicken soup and she does not skim all the fat off. Now I make big pots of it, and freeze it 2 serving containers so it is ready when I need it. I also drink lots of tea. In any respect, add a good book, a knitting project and a doting family member and you will feel better in 7 to 10 days, A note of caution, beware the cough. Secondary bacterial infections have been reported the last two flu seasons. If the cough lingers, an x-ray may be required. OK, I’m done. Feel better soon.

    • Thanks for all that. :) I’ll be sure to look after a lingering cough… My sinuses are AWFUL in the mornings, I haven’t been feeling like myself until midday… So half-sick, I guess.

  3. glad to hear you’re getting better!

    vitamin c caps are great, but don’t help if you’re already sick. those are good to take when you feel mildly under the weather, to try and keep the cold at bay. that’s according to my grandmother. :)

    australian bacon and canadian bacon are pretty similar. great minds think alike?

    i notice a lot of people ragging on pinterest. i realize there are a high number of wedding boards, but many people behave as if pinterest is myspace and we better get rid of it while we still can. which is strange, cause i’ve used pinterest for school, for art, for crafting, for quilting, for cooking… all completely useful endeavours. glad to hear you got ‘meaningful’ use out of it too!

    • Yeah, I consider Pinterest a very very useful tool, too. For example… when I’m gathering as many images as possible for design inspiration… Or helping my husband shopping for t-shirts. Very useful indeed.

      Yes, I think both bacons are meatier. :)

  4. So glad to hear that you’re feeling better! Feeling rotten is a big downer. My fav get-better food? Homemade chicken soup. And garlic. Loads of garlic any way, but roasted is the yummiest.

    • MMmm garlic. They used it to clean wounds in WW1 when other anti-bacterials and anti-microbials were unavailable on the battlefield… I love garlic! It’s so useful.

  5. My favorite thing to eat when I’m sick (or just hungover, lol) is nutritional yeast. I know, it’s not really a food – you use it as a flavoring or additive. Anyway, it’s comes in small yellow flakes that taste a bit cheesy/buttery… a lot of my vegan friends use it as a cheese substitute. It’s great on veggies & popcorn; my favorite way to eat it is on buttered toast. It has a lot of nutrients, including a whole scad of B vitamins & protein. You can buy it in bulk at the health food store, and since it weighs barely anything you can get a lot for cheap :)

    Glad you’re feeling a bit better! Seems like everyone has been getting sick lately… I’m just waiting for my turn haha :)

    • Oh, thanks for the tip. I haven’t heard of it or tried it, so I’ll keep my eyes open… (Bacon and eggs for a hangover here, too… or thin oatmeal)

      Everyone is sick? I feel so out of the loop lately. At least there’s no passing flu germs through the internets… (I almost said “virally…”)

  6. I’m a fan of avgolemeno chicken soup. Something about lemon plus the whole chicken soup bit really helps with the nasties. Plus, I can eat all I want of it while pregnant, which is probably better than the hot toddies I usually choose when I feel a sore throat coming on!

  7. For me, I need egg drop soup. I guess it’s just a variation on the famous chicken soup. But I love it and it always make me feel better.

  8. Yes, vitamin C is useful! It is useful as a daily preventative against infections, and it will also ease congestion with minimal side effects when you are deeply snotsick. I have hypertension, and mega-doses of the vitamin are the only thing I can take that won’t interact badly with my medicine, when colds and flu attack. It won’t cure polio, but it makes living through a bad cold easier. Vitamin C’s anti-inflammatory properties keep arthritis at bay for me, too (this won’t be true for everyone. Consult your physician!) Your body will naturally eliminate any excess vitamin C. Each person needs different amounts, at different times in his/her life. I take 1,000 mg each day, or else I am absolutely crippled with whole-body joint pain.
    Glad you are feeling better. Hope that the smoothies will repair your intestinal flora/fauna so that you can better tolerate the salty, fatty, protein-rich foods that you need to completely rebuild your health.

    • AHAHAHA snotsick! That is the best description of that awful part of a cold when you’re sure that your brains have turned to snot there’s just so much! Thanks for the laugh. :D

    • I like the term “snotsick” too! hehehe. Thanks for the info about vitamin C… When I was at college in Austin, I used to get a “coldblaster” smoothie when I was sick… Usually one or two and I started feeling like life was worth living again.

      I do so love salty, fatty, protein rich foods… MMmmMMmmMMMmmmmmm……

  9. I’m an American, and I think that bacon looks delicious! I bet it would make an awesome BLT. My go-to sick food is chicken soup… the broth, really… but I like mine with very thin egg noodles in it. And I’ll second the tea… with lemon and honey. Glad to hear you are on the mend.

  10. Ah, miso is one of those miracle foods. I drink a lot of tea, sometimes made from boiled ginger + honey. My husband also insists upon lots of (sauteed) garlic, usually added to whatever is for dinner. I am a sinus sufferer, so I use a netti pot frequently in order to avoid getting a secondary infection. I know I’m getting better when I get a craving for cheap chocolate (e.g., Hershey bar). Weird, but I don’t know why that is.
    Take it easy, and get better!

    • Yeah, but it’s hard for me to find clear information about all the wonderful benefits of miso… I mean… Some people claim it can protect you against radiation… So I’ll stick to the zinc, iron, and fiber benefits… And it’s rare to find a good for you convenience food.

      Mmmmm cheap chocolate… It sounds kind of good to me…

      • Ya, I would have serious doubts about any significant protection from radiation. If nothing else, miso is an easily digestible source of protein when one otherwise might not feel like eating much. Also nice on grilled fish, but that’s a non-sick story…

  11. I didn’t know that yoghurt was protein. Huh. There, I’ve learned my fill for the day!

    I tend to default to a lot of oranges (I find that the citris makes my throat feel better if it’s hurting) and, strangely, iceburg lettice. I assume my body craves it because of the high water content when I can’t always stand the thought of drinking water when ill, but who knows. I’ve been known to slowly plow my way through an entire head of the lettice while dying on the couch. :D

    Glad you’re getting back to normal!

  12. I’m glad you are feeling better! I believe you may have just inspired me to try miso soup for myself … :)

    • It’s super yummy… Also full of iron (I tend to be anemic, so I keep track of those things!) and apparently has anti-ageing qualities, all kinds of stuff.. I’ve even used it as soup stock base instead of veggie or chicken, just depends on the recipe…

    • Yeah, that site has some really delicious recipes! :) Thanks… I’m still not entirely up to speed but it’ll happen soon…

  13. My favorite sick person food is wonton soup and saltines. And ginger ale.

    When I lived in Australia, I DESPERATELY missed American bacon. Like seriously missed it. I remember asking the guy at the grocery store if there was anywhere I could find it. I guess the difference is the way it’s cured. And no, I couldn’t find anything like it anywhere. That and I really missed true Mexican food. But boy, was the Thai food good in Oz!

    • Stephen totally made some wonton soup the other night, and it was just extra divine or something….

      I really missed “regular” bacon for a while, but then I learned to fry this meaty bacon as crisply as possible and it was still all crispy and yum, but with more meat… A cantina opened up here about a year and a half ago, and their food actually tastes like Mexican.. Well, to be more accurate, it’s really delicious texi-cali type food… I was BESIDE myself with joy, I never thought I’d be moved by a taco.

      You’re so right, the Asian food kind of makes up for it… I didn’t know the difference between Vietnamese and Thai before I moved here, now I eat all kinds of stuff I didn’t know existed… Interesting!

  14. aside from the appearance of the bacon, which looks just like american ‘thick cut bacon’, is there a taste difference? is it smoked in another way, with some exotic (to me) australian wood? can we buy it here? tell, tell.

    get plenty of rest, eat whatever weird things you crave, take it easy and the rest will happen. before you know it, your family will be wanting things again. LOL!

    • It varies from butcher to butcher, but I think as a rule there’s no “established” way to cure Australian bacon… That’s not really the way Australians do things anyway, more likely each butcher would just cure it their own way. I do like the prevalence of indie butchers, the big grocery chains do their own meat, too, but it doesn’t seem to bother the indie butchers…

      And that is just about all I know about it… ;) I’m not a huge meat eater. I just like bacon. And the occasional burger… And I’m kinda jonesing for Chik fil a because I’ve been reading all the news coverage about the weird proxy war being fought through chicken in the US right now.

  15. Glad you’re feeling better! I’ve been incognito (we’re replacing some water damaged floors) and haven’t been on-line, checking blogs. So good to hear you’re feeling better! I love miso soup, especially with some nice pieces of tofu. I make a miso salmon dish every once in a while too.

    My grandmother used to make an Eastern European style garlic soup when I was sick. I loved that stuff… must find that old recipe she gave me now. NOW- I think I really want that for dinner.

  16. I’m a big fan of spicy food when sick. A big malaysian laksa with lots of chilli is sure to clear out the nose and make me feel alive again! Also I’ve found myself (and read a bit) about drinking warm water each morning with a bit of lemon in it, just kinda cleans out the body or something. A good alternative to tea. Good to hear you’re feeling better!

  17. I’m glad you’re on the mend – this winter it seems half the southern hemisphere is full of one lurg or another. When I was a kid mum used to sometimes steam spinach and top with a poached or chopped soft boiled egg with a little butter. Yum! Must have been a weird kid cos my JJ looks at me funny when I ask for it.

  18. So sorry to hear it’s been a sick week. What a bummer that it’s been dragging! I like miso, too. Sometimes all I can ‘taste’ are the comfort foods and at least that’s mental happiness! There is a store here that sells “Lemon Ginger Echinacea” juice which is just wonderful and we go and stock up on it when one of us is sick… it’s sort of like lemon ginger tea but is sweetened by grapefruit and grape juice.

  19. So glad you’re on the mend. It’s chicken soup for me too, made with the whole chicken so you get all the nutrients, then it’s pulled off the bones and you’re left with yummy chicken and vegetables in broth that’s delicious, easy to digest and good for you.
    I have to say I like Pinterest. I discovered that every single pair of trousers I pinned was exactly the same shape. So now I know that’s what I like…and I’m making trousers that shape. Same with dresses! It’s a really interesting exercise.
    Feel well and don’t try to do too much too soon…it’s not a great idea…I know…I always do it!

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