Colds and FluEXPLAINED
Facts about Cold and Flu:
Every year millions of people suffer from cold or flu symptoms that affect their ability to function optimally. Even though there is no known cure for colds and flu, there are ways to treat the symptoms.
Symptoms associated with a common COLD:
- Nasal stuffiness / congestion
- Sore throat
- Runny nose
The common cold normally lasts for about 7 to 10 days and you will start showing symptoms about 3 days after you were infected. The first sign of a cold is usually a sore throat.
Symptoms associated with the FLU:
- Muscle and joint pain
- Respiratory problems
The flu typically lasts about 5 to 7 days and normally you will start showing symptoms about 2 days after you were infected. The first sign of flu is typically body aches and pains.
Colds and flu are caused by viruses which you can get through:
- Touching a contaminated area (door handles, toilets, etc.)
- Coming into contact with someone who has the virus.
These viruses are spread via mucous droplets in the air and on surfaces, and because none of us can survive without human contact it is close to impossible to avoid getting exposed.
The best remedy is to get some rest. Your body is hard at work trying to get rid of the virus and would prefer doing so in peace and quiet, so going for a hike or a session at the gym is definitely not a good idea. Getting your symptoms under control and boosting your immune system will help you feeling back to your old self in no time.
How can I prevent getting the virus?
Wash your hands at least 6 times a day
This might sound excessive to some, but think about it: You should wash your hands before a meal (generally 3 times a day), after you go to the toilet (generally 3 times a day) and after you have sneezed. Washing your hands frequently rids them of germs that you might have come into contact with.
Boost your immune system
Our immune system can be seen as our internal doctor. It regulates our health based on the condition that it is in. By eating healthily, exercising, not smoking and limiting your alcohol consumption, you are allowing your immune system to function at its best. Because none of us can ask our immune system, “Hey, how’re you doing?” we will only realize that it is in bad shape when we are sick.
Be extra sure that your immune system has everything it needs in order to keep you healthy by:
- Getting enough sleep (8 hours a day is recommended)
- Eating a healthy balanced diet (including all food groups)
- Exercising regularly
- Supplementing with vitamins and minerals
Here are some essential immune boosting vitamins, minerals and herbs (although many assist in the maintenance of a healthy immune system, these are known primarily for boosting the immune system):
Vitamins : Vitamin C
Minerals : Zinc lactate trihydrate and Selenium
Herbs : Echinacea and Garlic