8 Natural Necessities to Beat a Cold
It's that time of year. Cold & Flu SZN.
I've recently regained my ability to breathe through my nose and I'm excited to share some of my favorite natural cold remedies. Some tastier than others.
I try my best to stay as natural as possible when I'm sick. Over the counter medications tend to target the symptoms of colds but I want to directly support my immune system, reduce the severity of my cold and shorten my recovery time.
If you need some symptom relief to get you through your day, I'd advise to take the over the counter meds during the day and go all natural at night so your body is equipped with all that it needs to heal while you rest.
Here are some Natural Remedies to help you get over your cold
1. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and plays a vital role in supporting your immune system, bone health and give you healthy and vibrant skin. It is recommended that men consume about 95mg a day and women consume 75mg a day and can be increased to 200mg a day while fighting a cold.
Vitamin C is a water soluble vitamin which means your body isn't able to store any consumed in excess and taking too much at once can result in nausea, diarrhea or some extra toots. Small doses of Vitamin C throughout the day is the best way to making sure you're getting this needed nutrient. Add a serving of greens to each meal, and a few slices of fruit such as mango, kiwi and oranges as a snack to get in your daily dose.
2. Antibacterial foods
Foods such as ginger, honey and garlic are made for beating the cold since they are jam-packed with antibacterial and antimicrobial compounds. Ginger is a great anti-inflammatory and really soothing on a scratchy or sore throat. Raw honey is filled with antioxidants, phytonutrients and can be helpful in suppressing your cough. Garlic is made of natural compounds that destroy bacteria and viruses.
Try mixing all these ingredients into a tea. Slice up some ginger and boil in a pot of water. Once water is hot, pour into a cup and mix in 1tbsp of raw honey, sliced gloves of garlic and a squeeze of lemon. Drink up!
3. Oil of Oregano
Nature's most potent antioxidant and antimicrobial herb. It has traditionally been used to fight off respiratory infections but its antimicrobial properties can be helpful in combatting other bacterial infections in the body.
I usually take a few oil of oregano capsules when I notice the early signs of a cold developing or if I've been in contact with someone with a cold to stop it dead in its track.
IMPORTANT: Oil of oregano does an amazing job at killing bacteria, good and bad and should not be taken longer than a 2 week period to protect the integrity of your gut. After taking oil of oregano or antibiotics it is important to restore your intestinal gut with probiotics.
Your gut contains beneficial bacteria and makes up about 70% of your immune system. Probiotics are essential for optimal digestion and a healthy immune system. They can be found naturally in fermented foods such as yogurt, kimchi, sauerkraut, miso soup and kombucha. However if you've recently been taking oil of oregano or had a dose of antibiotics, eating fermented foods may not be enough to rebalance your gut. I would strongly recommend adding a probiotic supplement to your diet.
5. Bone Broth
The elixir of life. Who doesn't like soup when they're sick? Bone broth is filled with essential minerals such as potassium and magnesium, ready to hydrate and nourish your body. Since it's easily absorbed into your system, your body isn't burdened with the stress of digestion. Add in some veggies and noodles or enjoy on its own for optimal absorption.
This has been a huge life saver for when you get that little tickle in your throat. Grab some propolis ASAP.
Propolis is natural compound made by bees used to coat and protect the beehive. Propolis' natural antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties can be used for wound healing and available in different forms such as ointments or sprays. I personally love Beekeeper's Naturals Propolis. My go-to for soothing a troubled cough or sore throat, works well to prevent colds and the perfect size for travelling.
7. Clear the Mucous
I'm not just talking about blowing your nose. Neti Pots are a great way to remove some of that unwanted sinus congestion. If the idea of pouring some water into your nose makes you uncomfortable I suggest an ol'fashion steam.
Bring a pot of hot water to a boil, add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to the water. Sit in front of the pot and cover yourself with a large blanket and enjoy the heat for about 10-20mins.
I rotate between Neti pots and steaming to clearing up sinus congestion. I find doing this right before bed is helpful in getting a good night's rest.
There is no replacement for sleep or anything you can sub in to reap the benefits of resting your body. Do yourself a favor and use up your sick days, reschedule your meetings and cancel any plans that require you being vertical. Sleep is so vital to repairing your body and you will need more of it since your body is working overtime to fight this cold. Health is wealth and everything can wait until you're feeling better. Plus they'll thank you for not sharing your germs with them.
Keep in mind, these remedies work the best if being used within the early stages of developing a cold. With the exception of oil of oregano, they are also helpful in strengthening your immune system to prevent colds and reducing the severity for when they occur. If you're experiencing these symptoms longer than 10 days please go see your doctor.
Oh and drink more water.