Wednesday, November 26, 2008

when the body says "enough is enough!"

I'm sure you've all had those caffeinated, running-around-like-a-headless-chicken kind of days.

Between working and going to school, traveling to attend and present at a conference, and just keeping up with the demands of each jam-packed day, my body finally said, "Enough." I got sick two weeks ago, and was pretty miserable in a self-imposed quarantine for a whole weekend plus the following Monday and Tuesday. And the fact that I've fallen off the exercise wagon for the past few (ok, several) weeks doesn't help my immune system one bit.

If you (or the people around you) are dropping like flies with the cold and flu, here are some remedies I swear by:

Warm saltwater. Mom and Grandma were right. At the first sign of a cold, gargle frequently with a mixture of warm water and some sea salt. This can reduce the swelling in the nasal and throat passageways (which happens when you have a cold).

Avoid dairy products. Dairy products can increase mucous production in the body. And excess mucus = breeding ground for bacteria. This is why having a cold can pave the way for a bacterial infection.

Apple cider vinegar. First thing in the morning, I mix a tablespoonful or so of unfiltered apple cider vinegar (such as Bragg's) and a couple of teaspoons of raw honey into a cup of warm water. Unfiltered apple cider vinegar soothes a sore throat, and honey has antibacterial properties. Sip slowly. This worked wonders for me, especially since I hate waking up in the morning when I have a cold and feel all this gunk in my throat (sorry to be descriptive). Another bonus? Apple cider vinegar is like a detox drink, flushing out toxins. Now that I think about it, I should drink this more often!

Vitamin C/citrus fruits. This one's a no-brainer. And of course, lots of water, hot soup, herbal tea, and plenty of rest. Mmmm speaking of citrus... I look forward to winter's blood oranges! They are almost too pretty to eat, but sooo good.

(How easily distracted I am about food. Back to the topic at hand.)

I decided to call in sick for two days. Despite my worries about falling behind my work and school schedule and my unease with the idea of "doing nothing", I was so glad I did it. My body wanted me to put those brakes on, and I listened (I learn the hard way sometimes). I think I recovered more quickly because of it.

I have to say, I think I got pretty good at the art of doing nothing.

P.S. Disclaimer: I have no medical training, and these are just "my" remedies that work for me... when in doubt, contact your physician or health care practitioner!

tea set photo by cyberlaundry

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1 comment:

cyberlaundry said...

MIA! Glad to know you're feeling better. And yes, that warm water with salt thing works wonders. I just never listen to my Dad's/Mom's/Lola's voice in my head until it's nearly too late :) I miss you and hope you're well. I'm up to my eyeballs copyediting a cookbook (!). So once in a while my favorite Pasta/Dessert/Anything Edible Princess pops into my head. Hugs!

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