As we are quickly approaching cold and flu season it can be all too easy to keep reaching for the pills and other medications. However, you might like to check out some of the less chemical crammed options too! While we are all more than aware there isn’t a cure for the flu or the common cold, over the rest of the year in the lead-up, you might like to bolster your immune system in advance.
Ginger is something that most people associate with heading off morning sickness. However, it has also been used to help chemotherapy patients. Often with flu-like symptoms, you can feel nauseous or actually vomit. In a study funded by the National Cancer Institue involving 644 people. Out of those 644 patients, some were issued a placebo and others a ginger capsule. The people who took the capsules were rating their nausea has lessened. To make this work for you and your flu, you can take ginger root, capsules or powders. Ginger teas and ales are also excellent choices. If you choose to take ginger, then be aware it is not recommended to be taken with high cholesterol medication, diabetes, high blood pressure medications or blood-thinners.
If you find ginger just a bit too strong, and many people do, then you might like to take a shot with oregano oil. This simple oil helps by increasing bile flow, which will aid digestions and calm an upset stomach. While we are talking about oregano oil, we should also touch on the fact it is excellent at easing sore throats too. Much like the lemon and honey combination, it has antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
Aches and Pains
One of the worst things about having the flu or a cold is the inability to get warm, while also having a fever. The use of penetrating heat like eucalyptus oils helps to clear up any congestion. You can add a few dabs on a tissue and sniff it throughout the day, or add it to a carrier oil and apply it to your chest. Hot water bottles and a warm bath can also help to relieve those aching shoulders and heavy legs. CBD Oil for pain is a great option. CBD seems to be a bit of a buzzword right now, but it is with good reason, it doesn’t pack any of the psychoactive side effects instead gets to work on the pain.
One of the most painful parts of a cold or flu is the sore nose and throat. Tackling this without medication has become an almost commonplace thing, and in fact, some people enjoy a cup of hot honey and lemon at other times – when they aren’t in pain and are 100% healthy. Below we talk about the importance of staying hydrated, and sipping honey and lemon will undoubtedly aid you in that quest. Honey is a little bit of natural magic, it tames coughs and tickles in the throat more effectively than many cough medications. If you aren’t in the mood for the tea, then just a few teaspoons of honey, straight down the hatch will do. Lemon is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial, meaning it will zap pain and germs. Lemon also breaks down mucus, boosts your vitamin c levels, and increases saliva (keeping the throat moist).
You can become dehydrated very quickly when you are suffering from the flu or a cold. Rather than keep drinking, many people try to just stay in bed and wait it out. And, while it would be silly to say forget the bedrest, it would be more foolish to encourage you to be there without plenty of liquids. As mentioned above, colds and a case of flu can make people vomit, losing even more water. If you have any of the following you need to take action asap:
- Dry skin
- Dry mouth
- Dark Urine or a low output
- Heart Palpitations
- Muscle Cramping
- Not Sweating
Taking small sips often can help ward off dehydration. You can also have soups and broths to help keep your hydration levels topped up.
You should be working on this one all year long, but the truth is most of us stock up when we are already getting sick. The best vitamins to take would be:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D3
And you probably know that most of us are very low in B vitamins too. Now on to the natural stuff. Echinacea, the one that we all rush for next to Vitamin C. Most people who support a more natural approach to health will point to Echinacea. It can be taken as a tea, a capsule, a dried herb or as a pill. It is believed to have a very complex mix of active substances which are considered to have an impact on the human immune system. If you take this all year round, you might just lower your chances of getting a cold. And that is no bad thing.
Beta-glucan. While it might sound like the name of a potential Star Trek character is actually a sugar. It is found commonly in baker’s yeasts, oats, barley, and other grains. Why are they so great? Well, they work by increasing the host’s immune defenses by activating a complement system. What does that mean? Well, basically it joins forces with your immune system and improves its natural killer function – attacking anything that isn’t supposed to be there.
A cold or flu can really knock you off your feet for a week or more. Hopefully, by taking steps earlier in the year to improve your immunity, you can ward it off. And, while natural remedies are brilliant in helping you live a healthy lifestyle if you are offered a flu shot, you will be protected by more strains and lessen the impact if it does hit you. So invest in some natural supplements, fresh fruit, and veggies plenty of water and get a little bit more active.