We feel you, Cameron.
The sudden change in weather has all of us in the Bear Mattress office feeling, well, under the weather. And all though coughing all over everything and everyone we interact with is just oh so wonderful, we’d like to get over our little bugs… fast. We’d also like to feel better without the use of over the counter treatments if and when at all possible. Below are some tips and tricks to help you kick that cold naturally.
Taking care of your nose and sinuses is the number one priority in ridding yourself of a cold or the flu. Blow your nose often - and don’t sniffle. And wash your hands post-nose blow.
You should also sleep with your head a bit elevated, so as to drain your sinuses.
Another option is nasal irrigation. If you’ve never used something like a Neti Pot, it will be weird, but it works to clear the sinuses of all that bad mucus. Doctors advice against using them daily for long periods, though, because they can also rid you of good bacteria.
Go on a tea binge.
Say sayonara to coffee, alcohol and soda while you’ve got a cold (actually, kick that soda habit once and for all). Look for teas that have peppermint, juniper, eucalyptus, rosehips, matcha, echinacea, eleuthero root and ginseng in them.
Skip the gym.
Yes, you can can go on a light run as long as your symptoms are all above the neck, but stay out of the gym - you don’t want to spread your germs all over the place. Also, exercise is an absolute no-no when you've got a fever; raising your body temperature when you’re running a fever will only make you worse.
Get yourself some pho.
A steaming hot bowl of pho will immediately help with congestion, and spicing it up with help to clear your sinuses. Plus, warming up when you’re feeling ill is a great way to feel instantly better. And it’s not just a feel better thing. Pho is packed with iron, protein, zinc, a bunch of healing herbs and spices, and all that broth provides some very needed fluids.
Eat foods rich in vitamins D and A.
Move over vitamin C - recent studies have shown that there is no link between vitamin C and getting over illnesses. Vitamin D, however, acts as a natural antiobiotic, and studies have shown that people who have recently suffered a cold or flu have significantly lower levels of the vitamin in their blood than those who haven’t been ill. Fatty fish, eggs, cheese, soy milk, orange juice, for example, are all jam packed with vitamin D. Vitamin A dense foods such as sweet potatoes, carrots, leafy greens, apricots and tropical fruits can all work to boost your immune system when you feel a cold coming on.
Hit the shower before bed.
The steam from a nice hot shower will help clear your sinuses and ease your congestion, making falling and staying asleep a lot more pleasant.
Invest in a good humidifier.
Humidifiers are a godsend in the wintertime. Even when you’re not sick, having a humidifier constantly running in your bedroom and/or living room is a great way to prevent dryness, and cool mist humidifiers make breathing a lot easier when you have a cold.
Channel Sleeping Beauty
Sleep as much as your schedule will allow. Studies have shown that people who sleep six hours or less a night are four times more likely to get a cold - after all, sleep is the BIGGEST factor in whether or not you have a strong immune system - so make sure you’re getting at least 8 hours nightly. But in the chance that you do get sick, sleep as much as you can. When you’re asleep, your body directs more energy to your immune system, thus helping you get better faster.