Fruits that fight the flu

If you're not eating the recommended 5 fruits and vegetables a day, here's a new reason to head to the produce aisle.
© Men's Health // © Men's Health

Apples

The most popular source of antioxidants in our diet, one apple has an antioxidant effect equivalent to 1,500 mg of vitamin C. Apples are loaded with protective flavonoids, which may prevent heart disease and cancer.

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1 of 6 Boxes of apples (Frank Rothe/Getty Images)

Papayas

With 250 percent of the RDA of vitamin C, a papaya can help kick a cold right out of your system. The beta-carotene and vitamins C and E in papayas reduce inflammation throughout the body, lessening the effects of asthma.

More: 10 ways to stop a cold in its tracks

2 of 6 Stacked papayas (Stuart Antrobus/Getty Images)

Cranberries

Cranberries have more antioxidants than other common fruits and veggies. One serving has five times the amount in broccoli. Cranberries are a natural probiotic, enhancing good bacteria levels in the gut and protecting it from foodborne illnesses.

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3 of 6 Men harvesting cranberry in bog (Preston Schlebusch/Getty Images)

Grapefruit

Loaded with vitamin C, grapefruit also contains natural compounds called limonoids, which can lower cholesterol. The red varieties are a potent source of the cancer-fighting substance lycopene.

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4 of 6 Grapefruit halves (Ray Laskowitz/Getty Images)

Bananas

One of the top food sources of vitamin B6, bananas help reduce fatigue, depression, stress and insomnia. Bananas are high in magnesium, which keeps bones strong, and potassium, which helps prevent heart disease and high blood pressure.

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5 of 6 Bananas (Iain Sarjeant/Getty Images)