Top 5 Natural Cold & Flu Fixes
This week for #SelfCareSunday, we’re kicking it off with colds & flu. It only seems appropriate since December is here and ’tis the season for stuffy noses and mouth-breathing. Getting sick as an adult isn’t fun. It can be stressful having to put your responsibilities on hold temporarily, and it just isn’t the same not being able to call on mom or dad when you need something. However, getting sick sometimes may be a blessing in disguise. Sometimes. When our body starts to shut down, it’s telling us that we need to pay attention.
Over the years I have found that a lot of over the counter medications don’t quite make me feel better. Plus, I have NO idea what half of the ingredients are. No thank you!!! I would like to know what I’m putting into my system to “heal” it. Luckily, natural cold and flu remedies and natural healing in general is becoming more widely acceptable. If you’re like me and prefer a more natural approach to curing a cold, read on! Here are my top 5 tried and true tips for beating sickness without popping pills.
– rest & relax –
This is THE most important part of recovery. Your body is working overtime to fight off whatever you came down with, so exposing your body to even more stress will either make it worse or prolong your symptoms. I know it can be hard to not do work because you feel like you’re being lazy but just chill out, k? This is the perfect excuse to stay in bed and binge-watch YouTube videos. Embrace the art of hygge.
– hydrate –
Staying hydrated is very important on a daily basis, but even more so when you’re sick. Water helps keep your body temperature in check if you’re burning up and also flushes out waste. You can take it to the next level with healing herbal teas, nourishing smoothies, and cold-pressed juices.
Anti-inflammatory: Golden Milk (click here for the recipe!) Turmeric has been used for years in Ayurveda and is mostly known for its anti-inflammatory benefits for the inside and out. Golden Milk is a delicious way to enjoy the healing benefits of turmeric, especially if you get random body aches while you’re sick, and also acts as a sleep/relaxation aid for me.
Sore/Tickly Throat: Traditional Medicinals Throat Coat Tea – The marshmallow root in this tea is extremely soothing as it goes down. Trust me, just give it a try.
Sleep: Traditional Medicinals Sleepytime Tea, Chamomile Tea
General healing/Nausea/Stomach Upset: Lemon & Ginger Tea
Green Smoothie: frozen banana, pear, handful of greens, water (optional but highly recommended: a bit of fresh grated ginger). In general, green smoothies are a great way to get a boost of nutrition in a delicious tasting drink. The fibre in smoothies also aids in removing waste from your system.
– nourish –
Even though you’re probably laying in bed like a potato, you still need to fuel your body. I know, the last thing you probably want to do is prepare and cook meals when you’re not feeling well. You might not even be able to stomach anything.
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”
Luckily, soup is one of the best things to have when you’re sick because it nourishes and helps to keep you hydrated at the same time. My personal favourite is miso soup because there’s very little preparation involved. Boil some water and chop some green onions if you’re feeling up to it, then mix in some miso paste. Add a side of crackers or plain whole grain toast and you’re done. It also helps to prepare soups in advance and freeze them for emergency situations like this. Try these: curried pumpkin soup / creamy potato soup / tofu chicken noodle soup by Plant Based Jane
– essential oils –
I can’t begin to tell you how life changing essential oils are! *insert prayer emoji here* There are dozens of essential oils out there but the following three are the ones I use most frequently.
Relaxation: lavender oil. Mist some on your pillow, put in a diffuser, light a lavender candle, or even bring a pot of water & a few drops of lavender oil to boil on the stove…just don’t fall asleep and forget about it 😉
Headaches: If you suffer from migraines or sinus headaches when you’re all stuffed up, rub a bit of peppermint oil on your temples. I use the ‘peppermint halo’ roll-on from Saje Natural Wellness – it’s great to toss in your purse in case of emergency.
Stuffy Nose: Fill a bowl with hot water and a couple drops of tea tree oil. Put a towel over your head and the bowl and inhale the steam for five minutes. Be careful not to get too close – the steam can actually burn your skin! (I’ve heard oregano oil also works well with this method). For a more hardcore way to clear your sinuses, keep reading.
*Special mention: oregano oil. A few of my friends have recommended this to me for clearing sinuses and for the times when you can feel like you’re coming down with something. Just put a drop under your tongue and let it work its magic.
– neti-pot –
Aaaand last but not least, my newly discovered love: the neti pot. In my opinion, having a stuffy nose is the WORST because a) you can’t breathe properly and b) you can’t taste food. The neti-pot is basically a tea pot looking thing that you hold up to your nostril and it miraculously clears up your stuffy nose. Sounds attractive, right? You can use a saline/salt solution, but I find that can irritate and dry out your nasal passages. Plain water does the trick. I use it up to four times a day if my stuffy nose is really bad. Honestly, I wish I had known about this thing all these years.
I hope you enjoyed this week’s #SelfCareSunday. If you know of any other holistic remedies that aren’t listed, please feel free to share!
All my love,