Sneezing, coughing, sniffling, I don’t know about you, but I have been steering clear of anyone, who does any of the above. Having a cold or flu can bring even the biggest and strongest of people down to their knees. Is it COVID-19 or a simple cold or flu, we don’t know! As we look at the bright sunny days to come, I know that the current pandemic has everyone worried but here’s how we can be sure to be on top of our game in order to prevent the cold and the flu!
Wash your hands, don’t cover your mouth with your hands when you sneeze or cough, and don’t touch your face. Our hands play an integral part in the prevention and acquisition of colds and flu. The flu virus can stay alive on your hands and body and even surfaces for hours and hours on end. Keeping your hands free from any germs that may be lying idle is always a good idea.
Please do not sneeze into your hands, make use of tissues that you can dispose of immediately, or sneeze or cough into your flexed elbow. Washing your hands regularly in addition to sanitizing is a sure way to keep the virus at bay.
Taking a jog or walk during the lockdown may not be possible, especially, if you live in an apartment but you have to make use of what you have available. A 30minute workout via Youtube will go a long way in keeping you fit and healthy. Exercise is one sure way of boosting up your immune system so that you can keep illness away.
Take up an exercise you enjoy! Pilates, dance class, yoga, whatever! Just have fun as you do it!
Rest and relaxation
The importance of rest and relaxation is often taken for granted by people who have busy lives as professionals, students and the like. Often I hear the term, “I will sleep or rest when I am dead!” Doctors often recommend that on average, adults must have 7-8hours of sleep, teens must have 9hours daily and growing children must have 10-12 hours daily. Inadequate sleep lowers the body’s immune system therefore making it susceptible to the flu virus. A balanced sleep routine will give the body enough time to rest and recuperate each day which in turn will keep your immune system up.
As you send your kids off to bed early so they rest, take your own advice and do the same! Despite popular belief, sleep is NOT a luxury but a necessity! Get as much of it as possible!
Yes, topping up on the veggies and vitamin C fruits is an obvious dietary requirement for good health, but did you know that dating back to ancient Egyptian times, garlic was used even by the military as an anti-bacterial? Fresh ginger, which is more commonly found in most homes on the other hand, has both antiseptic and anti-oxidant properties that are valuable for treating symptoms such as sore throats and inflammation of the mucus membranes.
Regularly incorporating garlic, onions, ginger, and other foodstuffs that help prevent getting a cold or flu into your daily cooking and beverage intake is a sure way to keep your health in check without much effort. A concoction of ginger, garlic, and lemon boiled together in water, with honey as an added sweetener has been in our family for years and has proven to be the leading remedy for the prevention of colds and flu. Don’t forget to brush your teeth afterwards to avoid lingering bad breath!
Use essential oils
Just because you cannot leave your home, does not mean you can’t enjoy the benefits of aromatherapy oils. Mixing essential oils with a base oil like olive or coconut oil can create a wonderful mixed blend oil to keep the sniffles away! You can also add a few drops to some hot water and inhale the healing properties.
Our recommendation: A few drops of eucalyptus into the water for your steamer is a common remedy when you feel a cold coming on.
As much as certain levels of stress are good for you, excessive stress can take its toll on your body and make you more susceptible to infections and illness. Pick your battles, protect your mind. Research has shown that pleasurable activities that keep you happy and smiling like playing with your pet, sex, positive thinking and a simple good laugh will keep the blues away.
Our recommendation: Stress management techniques such as breathing exercises, yoga, simple stretches, and massage will help you relax your body and in turn keep your immune system up. You only live once, make the most of it and stay happy!
Take your mother’s advice
Mothers are notorious for the strangest of remedies to keep you fit and healthy. From hanging a cut onion in your bedroom, to leaning over pots containing boiling water and floating herbs with a towel over your head. No matter how crazy or creepy some of these requests may be, once researched you will realize that there is usually good scientific evidence to back up some of these ‘ludicrous’ requests so don’t be so fast as to cross them out! Like we all know, ‘Mum is not always right, but she’s never wrong!’