02/12/2016 12:25 EST | Updated 02/18/2016 02:59 EST

Foods For Cold: 4 Foods With Healing Properties For Winter

If everyone around always seems to be sick and you've somehow managed to keep yourself cold-free (champ), we're here to offer you some extra protection.

With cold and flu season taking up a good chunk of winter, changing your diet is one way to ensure fewer sick days. One way to fight off a cold is by consuming more ginger (minced, sliced, pureed) throughout the week.

"Ginger can be especially beneficial for the winter cold for a few reasons. It can help with blood flow, fight pain and inflammation," says registered dietitian Nicole Osinga of Oshawa, Ont. "It is also used as a digestive aid for when a winter bug has left you feeling nauseated."

We asked Osinga to round up her top pantry items that include healing properties. From helping with digestion to antibacterial options, here are four diet must-haves for winter — and how to cook with them.

4 Healing Foods For Winter