You know the feeling. A slight tingle in your throat. Maybe you’re ears get plugged, or your eyes feel heavy. You may feel thirstier then usual or find yourself heading to bed earlier.
Whatever your specific ‘tell’ is, most of us get one.
It’s that little sign our bodies give us to warn us that we’re getting sick. This usually shows itself right around the time the weather takes a turn and the kids go back to school. Also the time routine and stress enters the space too.
coincidence? prob not 😉
As a busy mom I know what it’s like to put everything on hold when someone falls ill… but it’s ever worse when WE get sick! So here are my top 10 tips to keeping the cold and flu as far as fuck away from you (and the kids)
Here are my
Top Ten things
to have on hand to
kick out the
Cold or Flu
1~ Vitamin C.
Let’s start with my fav and quite possibly the most important vitamin. Here in our house we usually take 5000mg a day (when we’re healthy). But when we feel as though we’re catching something (or we’ve been around people who are sick) we up it to 10~12000mg A DAY. I know that seems like a lot compared to the RDA recommendation… but hear me out…. did you know that besides guinea pigs and a species of bat, we are the only other living organism on earth that can not make it’s own vitamin C?
We NEED this stuff daily!!
and our bodies need more when it’s stressed out and fighting infections.
Did you also know scientists estimate that without this mutation (of not being able to make our own C), we would actually be making 10-30 grams of Vitamin C a day (that’s between 10,000-30,000mg A DAY). This makes the RDA of just 45mg look horribly inadequate. So stock up and get it in!
My 2 go to favorite Vitamin C’s are by companies AOR, it comes in 1000mg capsules (which I find easier than tablets to swallow) and are fairly inexpensive, and Livon Labs which has (IMO) the best C around. It’s a liposomal encapsulated delivery system that increases the absorption by a ka-gillion (ok not an actual number, but you get my drift) It’s pricer than most, but well well worth it (especially for sick times)!
If you prefer, there are some pretty decent powders out there that you can add it to juice or smoothies, easier for the kids too.
2~ Vitamin D.
During the winter we take 2~4000IU of Vitamin D. We do this because living in the northern hemisphere and especially somewhere that typically has a cloudy rainy winter (aka not a bright snowy winter) can take it’s toll on our immunity… but we double this Vitamin aswell when we feel like we are getting sick, because, again, our bodies need more support when it’s stressed and sick.
Harvard University and many others have done studies that show without a doubt that supplementing with Vitamin D protects against acute respiratory infections. It’s also called the sunshine vitamin for it’s direct corallation to an uptick of our mental health (which can slump during the winter months as well)!
3~ Essentail Oils
Oil of Oregano (internal)
Known to kill pathogens on contact & proven to shorten the duration of illnesses, this is a go~to for any under the weather feelings.
Oil of oregano is an easy add to your oil pulling routine (which is a really great idea to help keep your mouth clean and virus free any day but esp around cold and flu season). It’s got that authentic Italian pizza flavor, so it’s also an easy add to soups 😉
Thieves Oil (external)
Theives oil is a really beautiful (IMO) smell to infuse your home when it gets chilly and you want that comfy feeling. It’s also world renowned for it’s ability to kill pathogens on contact, so enfusing it in the air is perf!I first fell in love with this oil when we moved to Salt Spring Island – my fav brand is the Marseilles Remedy
On the topic of scents and essential oils, try a few drops of eucylyptus (or fresh stems if you’ve got)! in the shower to help clear nasal passages and phlemy throats or on a tissue under your pillow at night – that’s a bonus one for ya)
4~ Prebiotics, Probiotics & Miso.
Probiotics may have fallen out of the spot light (not in our house), but does it surprise you that at least 70% of your immune system is in your digestive tract? Probiotics work to maintain that balanced space in your gut, keeping bad bacteria in check so you can keep feeling your bad ass self. Probiotics are a daily supplement here in our home (as they should be yours 🙂 and the one I keep coming back to is by Innotech Nutrition, their formula is fermented and uses organic black strap molasses infused with a unique herbal tea fermented with 10 bio-active probiotic cultures at a ph of 3.5 making it the one of the best pro-biotic’s for epic gut health (use code tamaramaria for 10% off).
While everyones sick you’re probably making soup (that’s what I do) so when we’re coming down with something it’s a win-win to add some beautiful Miso to help the good guys out. Having a simple broth like this with veggies (you could even add in some A+ Healing Mushrooms but now I’m getting carried away) also gives our bodies a break from heavy digestion, there fore more time & energy to concentrate on Healing.
5~ Ginger, Cayenne, Garlic, Lemon.
All of these natural ‘magic’ delights will help to fight off invaders in the body. Steep ’em into a tea or add them to soups or broths for the greatest benefits. Lemons alkaline your body, help rid the body of mucus and up your vitamin c, while ginger, cayenne and garlic are well known for killing germs and nasty bugs!
Have you ever roasted garlic (cut the top off, wrap it in some tin foil and drizzle with oil- throw it in the oven for about 30 min or till perfectly roasted) – this is so tasty spread on some toast! I’m gonna say it’s obviously better to buy organic for these items, esp when your under the weather, but you do you babe.
For something a little different, try a warm cup of the master cleanse lemonade. Known to nourish and cleanse the system it’s an easy mix of equal parts maple syrup (get the good stuff or don’t even attempt it) and fresh squeezed (real) lemon juice, mix this with recently boiled water and sprinkle with cayenne pepper (super important to heat up the body, fight infections and help with mucus).
Needed daily, it’s especially important when an illness strikes. Zinc is prevelent in cells all through the body and it’s importatnt to our immunity that we maintain that. Zinc helps our immune system fight off bacteria and viruses, so take between 10~20 mg a few times a day when you’re sick. As a side note* take zinc with a glass of orange juice because the vitamin c in the juice will help your body absorb the zinc better!
7~ Medicinal Mushrooms.
The mood-boosting compounds found in reishi have been very well know to enhance our immune system it also helps lessen fatigue (which tends to happen along with increased stress when sick).
Cordyceps are my next go to shroom, in fact… my go-to supplement (by hostdefense) combines both Cordyceps and Reishi together which increases all the good stuff to help the bad (IMHO). Cordyceps help with immune and energy, which as you know if you’ve suffered from stress and or sickness, you very quickly run out of them both! This powerhouse is used often with athletes and stress, but I think it’s a total game changer for illness. Harmonic Arts is also a really wonderful Canadian company that makes great mushroom blends.
Our Mama’s always told us to rest when we were sick, & it’s something I stress to my children too. Our bodies do their best healing when we are resting. (and I don’t mean watching tv or using the computer, but actual full on resting!). Our bod’s needs all the energy it can get to heal, so do it that small favor mm’k?!
9~ Warm Bath.
Water in general is soothing to humans and soaking in a warm tub can melt our troubles away. While feeling sick, make your bath work double duty by adding some epsom salts, apple cider vinegar or lavender oil. Relax your tired & sore muscles and do a bit more resting! Not too much heat & not too long. But enough to help recovery happen. (Warm baths are so amazing right before bed, but when you’re sick, any time will do).
*may I just plug a local small biz where the curator makes the most lovely and luxurious bath bombs ever! take a look at Kitchen Witch products here.
Hydrate. Hydrate. Hydrate.
This should be number one. I dont’ know why it isn’t… but anyways, always make sure that you are getting enough liquids. Period. Stop. But especially when ill.
You could also consider going on an all liquid meal plan. Soups, Broth, Tea, Fresh Juices, Water, will all hydrate well & give your body just enough energy to fight these invaders off.
In my opinion, afever isn’t usually something to be alarmed about. It’s actually our bodies way of effectively fighting off invaders. So stay comfortable & hydrated. Rest. & take care of yourself.
Stay home from work, cancel commitments & get better. (PLEASE)
When you take care & support your bodies fight, you recover faster & more fully.
How are you protecting your family and yourself this cold and flu (and covid) season?
*When a fever comes suddenly & violently, please seek medical advice.
Always seek medical advice if you are disoriented, have a seizure or if you are sick for longer than usual.