Tel +27 (021) 880 1444 | Fax +27 (021) 880 0291 | P.O. Box 12602, Die Boord, Stellenbosch, 7613
Emotional distress is as old as humankind itself and has been treated naturally for millennia. Emotional balance, and a subsequently healthy body, can be regained through simple and natural approaches.
It is simply so irritating: It is called the ‘common cold’ but there is no common cure, and, worse still, yours may be lingering way too long. Here is some advice on how to zap the virus sooner.
A stuffy head, a headache, weepy eyes and a runny nose – yes, it’s a nasty head cold and you want it gone, quick. This is easier said than done as we struggle with the challenges of our everyday, busy lives, but, if you want to get better soon, you need to do the sensible thing and lay low.
REVIVING RESTPossibly the biggest mistake most people make when they have a cold is that they don’t indulge in bed rest because it is ‘just a cold’. But if you rest, you are helping your immune system fight the virus. And, just as importantly, if you stay at home you are not spreading nasty germs around at work. What most people do not realise is that the cold virus can survive for almost a day on hard surfaces – that is a lot of potential for the bug to be picked up by other colleagues.
AVOID ANTIBIOTICSBetween 80 and 90% of upper and lower airway infections are of viral origin and therefore do not respond to antibiotic treatment. Antibiotics are for the sole treatment of bacterial infections.
MAINTAIN MOIST MUCOSAL MEMBRANESWhen your nose and eyes are running like a stream, the temptation is to buy over-the-counter medications such as antihistamines to ‘dry up’ your cold. This is, however, a bad choice as these drugs do not relieve the sniffles sooner. The mucous membranes of the nose, sinuses and bronchi must be kept as moist and clean as possible. These membranes do play a large role in allowing colds to take hold, but they are a very important part of the healing process as they help keep the nose, throat and lungs clean once that cold has you in its grips – mucosal membranes remove dust, pathogens and particles.
You can encourage the maintenance of moist mucosal membranes in the nose by spraying or rinsing with a hypertonic saline solution. Nebulising with this solution will keep the lungs moist and clean.
STAY HYDRATEDIt is very important to drink enough of the right fluids when you are man down with a cold. Water supports the immune system and helps keep mucus thin and running so that lungs and sinuses don't become clogged.
EAT CORRECTLYLeafy greens and vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli, winter squashes and kale are full of vitamins and minerals and keep the body in an alkaline state – viruses do not thrive in an alkaline environment.
Citrus fruits, melons, kiwi and berries are full of vitamin C, which is one of the best immune-boosting antioxidants.
Add some spice to your diet with turmeric, cayenne pepper, ginger and garlic, which boost the immune system and are antiviral.
EXERCISEMany of us shirk exercise at the best of times, but, believe it or not, when you have a cold there are no excuses as exercise forms an important part of your healing process. Regular exercise strengthens your immune system, thereby reducing your risk of infection in the first place. But, even when you are already sick, moderate exercise, such as walking, will still boost the immune system and help you to feel energised.
CONCLUSIONOf course the best remedy for a cold is prevention and one should be extra vigilant during the winter months. The thing is that you can actually start spreading the cold virus before you realise you even have it. So, always practise good hygiene by washing your hands regularly and wiping down often-used hard surfaces with a disinfectant. Continue to eat well, get enough sleep and exercise, and drink alcohol in moderation.
Top 10 Germ-laden spots
You are puzzling over why you are suddenly down with the flu or a cold. You know you have not been in direct contact with anybody who is similarly afflicted, so why have you suddenly become a bleary-eyed, red-nosed snot factory? The reality is that flu and cold viruses can survive on hard surfaces for up to 24 hours, so you need to be wary of the following top public germ-laden hotspots:
1. ATMs 2. Supermarket trolley handles 3. Escalator handrails and stair rails 4. Public toilet taps and basins 5. Food court tables 6. Public transport such as planes and buses7. The office 8. Lifts9. Credit card paying machines 10. Electronic stores
Without becoming unnecessarily neurotic about avoiding germs, there are several simple ways to keep them at bay to a certain degree:1. Wipe down tabletops, gadgets, trolley handles and any other surfaces where possible with a hygienic wipe.2. Wash your hands regularly, especially before eating, after going to the toilet, and after you have sneezed or coughed.3. Sneeze and cough into the crook of your arm.
Click here to browse or order previous issues