My 8 Tricks to Beating a Cold

"Let thy food be thy medicine" -- Hippocrates

Before I begin getting all worked up over this post's content... let me first say, I am not an expert on the cold and flu season. I understand that it can strike any humble soul regardless of how healthy and fit they may be. But I earnestly believe with a few key actions in your daily life, you and your family can truly outsmart a cold and/or flu from happening in your home.

The typical cold and flu season in America is seen as early as October and as late as April. A recent statistic stated that 1 in 5 people will contract influenza and there are over 200 different viruses that can cause the common cold. Seems a little daunting to some... but not me. I guess I don't buy into the idea that we're all "doomed". I'm also a little frustrated that mainstream medicine constantly sends the message that getting a flu shot is the only possible thing you can do to prevent the flu. Our bodies are perfectly and wonderfully made (Ps 139:14) and I believe they are designed in a way to heal itself if given the right tools and environment.

There are several things you can do, on your own, without the use of drugs and vaccines to help you beat the cold this winter. Now before I give you my list of tricks, understand that one's diet plays a HUGE role in all this. If a person's diet consists of high fat, processed sugars and flours, lots of red meat and is also low in fiber, fruits and veggies, and whole grains... they're already several steps behind. A cold can only survive in an environment conducive to it's survival. But a body that is healthy will not have a problem fighting off a cold.

Along with a healthy diet, remember that good handwashing and keeping your home clean with all natural cleaners is another way to minimize bacteria and viruses that may enter your home. Open windows occasionally to bring in fresh air and make sure the humidity in your house is at optimal levels.

I will admit several times throughout the cold and flu season I do start to get a burning, itchy nose which usually leads to a scratchy throat... this is how I know I am on the road to a cold. But thankfully with some good genetics and my go-to list of cold remedies, I am 100% in just a day or two. Every individual is different, but these following remedies truly are gems when it comes time to beat a cold.

So here is my go-to list of things I am armed with every cold/flu season:

1. (And most important) Xlear Nasal Wash with Xylitol. We move approximately 3,000 gallons of air from the nose to the lungs a day. This air can become polluted with bacteria and viruses, this is where xylitol comes in. Xylitol is a sweet crystalline carbohydrate that occurs naturally in virtually all fruits and vegetables. Xylitol has been show to decrease the adherence of harmful bacteria to the cells in our nose. In a study of 857 preschool children who chewed gum with xylitol, of those who chewed the gum had 40% less ear infections than those that didn't. Personally, I have used this spray for years and it has proven over and over it's effectiveness in preventing colds. My suggestion is to use it as often as you wash your hands. It's just like washing the bacteria out of your nose which in turn keeps your respiratory tract less immune to infections.

2. Emergen-C Flavored Fizzy Drink Mix. This is powerful stuff. I first read about this fizzy wonder many years ago in a health magazine and thought I'd pick up a box. So glad I did. One packet provides a powerful blend of Vitamin C, 24 nutrients, 7 B vitamins, antioxidants, and electrolytes. All you do is dissolve one packet into a glass of water and drink. When I know a cold is hitting hard, I take up to 4 packets in a day. I can't say that the taste is THE best, but for me, it works and I seriously can't live with out it!

3. Elderberry Extract. This Native American herb comes in many forms, but I prefer the liquid form. It has been shown to have effectiveness against the common cold, influenza and also helps with the symptoms that accompanies the cold and flu. Black elderberries are a detoxifier and overall booster to the immune system. Take as recommended.

4. Vitamin D. It's fall and where I live, the sun is hiding these days. We need the sun to deliver the all important vitamin D to help feed and nourish the immune system. Unless you are continually getting sunlight during the fall and winter months, you should be taking vitamin D. Vitamin turns on the genes that empower the body's immunity and it's germ-fighting ability. According to Dr. Mercola, "the research is quite clear, the higher your vitamin D level, the lower your risk of contracting colds, flu, and other respiratory tract infections." Read more about that here

5. Hot Tea. We are coffee drinkers around here, but when someone is coming down with a cold even my kids ask for some hot tea. There is just something about hot tea in your system when you are getting sick. Not only are fluids essential when you are getting a cold, but the steam from the tea helps to relieve congestion. White and green teas have the added bonus of being loaded with disease-fighting antioxidants, which may fight colds. Another recommendation is to drink tea with echinacea. Unlike antibiotics, which kill bacteria, echinacea stimulates the production of white blood cells and makes your body more capable of attacking viruses and fighting colds, coughs, flu and other respiratory conditions.

6. Lemons. Lemons are a powerhouse of vitamin C. Regardless of what others may say, I believe vitamin C is more effective than antibiotics when it comes to treating colds and viruses. When lemons are added to warm water they are considered a tonic for the liver. Warm water works well with lemon juice because it helps to increase the body's flow, and it stimulates the immune system. Drink many cups of warm lemon water throughout the day. Not only with it keep you properly hydrated, you'll be on your way to feeling well again.

7. Regular hand-washing. Germs travel. They will most likely travel from things we touch. Handles, door knobs, skin to skin, and so on. Make sure you wash your hands regularly and please avoid anti-biotic soaps.. triclosan is no good

8. Exercise. Well you definitely don't feel like moving your body when you're feeling under the weather, but believe it or not, it is one of the best things you can do. A recent study from the British Journal of Sports Medicine reported that in a study of 1,000 people over a 3-month period, the more the participants exercised, the less they reported getting sick. Those who exercised five days a week for 20 minutes or more experienced about 40% fewer days of illness compared with those putting in less than one day a week of activity. Exercise amps up blood flow, which increases the circulation of immune cells, allowing them to attack the viruses and bacteria that cause the common cold and other illnesses.

How do you combat the cold and flu season naturally?

1 comment:

  1. Here's my way... Drink lots of water, take vitamin C daily, stay away from sickies, and wash hands regularly. I don't get flu shots. In fact the one time I did I ended up getting sick anyway. My children have never had a flu shot. Shhh! Don't tell my mother-in-law! :-)