If your office is anything like ours, tissues are at a high premium right now. With all the wheezing and sneezing you’d think we are working on a hospital ward! But before you reach for that industrial sized bottle of Nyquil to drown your sorrows, consider these natural ways to get back on track to good health.
It’s kind of a clique, but it really works! Hot chicken soup helps clear clogged airways, and the nourishing broth will give you more energy. Add plenty of vegetables, including onion and garlic, for extra healing power.
Hot and spicy food
Some people swear by garlic, horseradish, chillis or spicy sauces to help ease congestion. Cook Indian or other ethnic foods that contain these ingredients, or simply add a spicy sauce to foods for extra zip.
This fragrant bulb contains a flavoring agent called alliin which acts as a decongestant. Garlic is also believed to act as an antioxidant and destroy free-radicals, the active oxygen molecules that damage cells, so add garlic liberally to your favorite foods.
Stay hydrated with plenty of liquids. Instead of coffee, fizzy or sweetened drinks, have plenty of water and pure fruit juices. Hot beverages work better for some people, so consider chamomile or peppermint herbal tea, or sip on hot water with a slice of lemon.
Drink orange juice for breakfast, snack on half a grapefruit, or add tangerine slices to a lunchtime salad. Getting an increased amount of vitamin C is especially important if you smoke, as smoking increases both your risk of catching a cold and your body’s need for this protective vitamin.
Many people find fresh ginger root helps treat the coughing and fever that often accompany colds and flu. Try making a ginger tea: Pour a cup of boiling water over 2 tablespoons of freshly grated ginger and let it steep for 5 to 10 minutes.
Remember, what you eat and how you take care of yourself will dictate how fact you get better and how well you bounce back afterwards. A daily routine of high-fat, high-sugar junk foods, skipped meals and lots of caffeine can make you more susceptible to minor illnesses like colds and flu. Instead, make sure you eat plenty of whole grains, fruit, vegetables and low-fat protein to keep your immune system strong. Think of nutritious foods as part of your cold-and-flu armour, and you’ll be ready to do battle whenever illness strikes.