Five edible essentials you shouldn’t live without

As a student with mounting debt and a ridiculously busy schedule, it may seem impossible to find the time and money to buy and prepare food you know is good for you. Fret not, comrade, these five edible essentials are not only affordable and accessible to purchase at any store near you, but they are also incredibly easy to grow in your kitchen or garden.

These can be added to your tea, juice, smoothie or tossed into any food you’re cooking. A little bit goes a long way with these potent natural remedies, and they can help keep your body balanced and happy, the way it should be.

Turmeric – If there is one natural remedy I could recommend to everyone, it would be turmeric. I’ve personally suffered with internal inflammation for quite some time and I swear, turmeric is the Ibuprofen or Aspirin of the natural world. The active ingredient found in turmeric, curcumin, has anti-inflammatory properties that ease swelling in the body, helping alleviate afflictions such as arthritis and fibromyalgia, to name a few. It can also help ease heartburn and upset stomach, and studies have shown that it can even help prevent heart attacks, diabetes and cancer.

Ginger – Much like turmeric, ginger fights inflammation in the body. It is also great for pregnant women and people going through chemotherapy or anything that causes nausea, because it eases the stomach and helps prevent vomiting. My favorite thing about ginger has to be the fact that on cold days, it really warms you up! A cup of ginger tea (either in tea-bag form or with actual ginger root) will stimulate circulation and can keep every inch of your body feeling cozy.

Garlic – Garlic is especially easy to consume because it’s used in practically every dish. Best of all? It’s one of the most nutritiously potent things you can eat. Garlic has been proven to boost the immune system, which means it can also fight off the common cold and flu. Studies have shown that high doses of garlic can be just as effective as certain prescription drugs in fighting high blood pressure. The antioxidants found within it may help veer off mental degradation such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. Finally, eating raw garlic can kickstart your body into detoxifying heavy metals, such as mercury and lead.

Lemon (Lemon water) – Lemons are extremely good for you and are a versatile product to consume. Eating it raw gives you a big dose of vitamin C, as well as calcium, magnesium and citric acid. The peel itself is full of these same nutrients, only on a far more potent level. Lemon found in skin products is great for fighting off wrinkles and acne. However, what is recommended above all else is to drink warm water with lemon in it, especially first thing in the morning. It’ll flush out toxins in your body, as well as build up your immune system to fight off colds and the flu. Add a little honey and ginger to it, and you’ll be resilient against anything coming your way this winter!

Apple cider vinegar – All right, I’m going to tell you up front that apple cider vinegar doesn’t taste too fantastic, but then again, what do you expect from something that has vinegar in it? Sure, it’s a shockingly strong taste that lingers in your mouth for quite some time, but one spoonful a day of this stuff can drastically alter your health. If you tend to get sore throats and irritated lymph nodes, apple cider vinegar will ward it right off. This is because the bacteria that causes sore throats can’t survive in the acidic environment the vinegar creates. Along the same line, it can clear out a stuffy nose during a cold. It is also said to help fight bad breath, fatigue, acne and dandruff, among other things.