Is pineapple really the go-to cure for winter colds? Doctor weighs in on TikTok theory.

From suggestions like getting a new toothbrush to using fresh sheets after being sick, TikTokers are sharing tips and tricks to stay healthy during cold and flu season.

Jewell (@raisingreverie) is one such TikToker sharing a preventive remedy she uses to ward off sicknesses in her household. The secret ingredient? An entire pineapple boiled in water.

The concoction creates fresh pineapple juice that Jewell says can be sipped hot or cold and is full of “vitamins and minerals” that can help “fight off infection.”

“This is my go-to when my family is sick!” Jewell says in a video viewed 8.7 million times. “Quick and easy to make and one of my best discoveries for natural cold/flu remedies.”

How to make pineapple juice at home

Jewell’s version of the pineapple juice boils down to four simple steps:

  1. Wash the outside of an entire pineapple thoroughly and remove the crown (the top leaves).

  2. Cut the entire pineapple, including the rind, into small pieces.

  3. Bring water to a boil in a pot, then add the pineapple pieces to the boiling water.

  4. Let the pineapple concoction return to a boil, then cool and strain.

Other versions of the recipe online recommend simmering the pineapple into a tea with add-ins like turmeric, honey and ginger for extra immune-boosting properties.

“Boiling the fruit will leach water-soluble vitamins like C into the water itself. You’re basically extracting nutrients from the fruit into the water,” Jewell says.

Autumn Cox (@fizzlefaddle) added cayenne pepper when she tried the pineapple juice to help her husband and herself kick a cold.

“I had no idea pineapple was so powerful,” she says. “It’s like a superfood.”

For anyone looking for a no-cook solution, Helena Faustin (@thatnursecancook) has a recipe for blending pineapple, lime and fresh ginger into a fresh juice.

“I’m telling you something — in 24 hours, it knocks that cold out,” Faustin claims.

Is pineapple juice helpful for fighting infections?

Fans of fresh pineapple juice may swear by the remedy for their own households, but Dr. Tamika Henry, a board-certified family physician and founder of Unlimited Health Institute, notes that anyone looking for a fruit boost during an illness may be better off eating pineapple rather than sipping it.

“I would not recommend pineapple juice for cold and flu season,” Dr. Henry told In The Know by Yahoo. “I would lean more towards pineapples because it has bromelain in it for the use of pain and inflammation.”

A 2022 study in the journal Nutrients demonstrated that the bromelain found in pineapple does have the ability to bind with certain foodborne pathogens, as well as the COVID-19 virus.

“Thus, the antibacterial and anti-SARS-CoV-2 virus inhibitory potentials of bromelain could be helpful in the management of viral infections and subsequent bacterial infections in COVID-19 patients,” the study concluded.

If nothing else, pineapple — fresh or juiced — can be a delicious treat when someone is feeling under the weather. Plus, it can help prevent dehydration, which is common in many cases of the cold and flu.

“Doing this helps hydrate you when you’re sick and also provides nutrients from the peel, not just the fruit,” Jewell notes.

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