Tis the season of runny noses and hacking coughs. If your cold is just a virus, without a fever, there are a few simple things you can try to battle the blahs and get back to your old self faster.
- Push Liquids or Juice
The body needs to be hydrated to fight infection. If you’ve been drinking water, but can’t stomach any more, try freezing juice in popsicle molds or in ice cube trays. Then enjoy as many as you like!
- Chicken Soup for the Soul… and the Cold!
It’s not just an old wives’ tale. Scientists say there is something in broth that helps fight upper respiratory inflammation and infections. They say it’s the chemical carnosine. Plus, inhaling the hot steam from the bowl helps clear your airways.
- A Hot Shower
As long as you don’t have a fever, the steam from a hot shower can open passageways and relax you.
Dry air is the last thing you want when you have a cold or cough. A cold-water humidifier can provide enough moisture to help ease your throat and symptoms and help you sleep.
No need to wear a necklace of garlic bulbs. Instead, just add it to your soup or pasta. Studies even suggest taking garlic supplements during cold season might help you recover faster.
The jury is still out on this one, but it’s worth a try. Some people swear by zinc to relieve a cold. Make sure to use zinc lozenges. Don’t take more than 30 mg a day as it can upset your stomach.
- Gargle Salt Water
Just add 1 teaspoon of table salt to 8 ounces of warm water, gargle, spit, and repeat. Several studies have found that gargling several times a day with warm salt water can reduce swelling in the throat and loosen mucus, helping to flush out irritants or bacteria.
- Get Moving
This may seem counterintuitive, but, unless you feel completely drained, a little exercise is a good idea. A 20-minute walk may help fight your sluggish mood and even open up your breathing passages. Just be careful and keep it slow. Yoga is also a good choice. Stretching can ease body aches and improve your mood.
- Sweeten with Honey.
Adding a little to tea or warm water can help make your scratchy throat feel better. Just be careful to never give honey to a baby who hasn’t reached his or her first birthday.
- Grab an Extra Pillow
Elevating your head with an extra pillow when you sleep can help relieve nasal passages.