Saturday, January 11, 2014

Can I escape a cold this year?

Dear Sister Knowitall,
It's cold and flu season and several people at work have a cold, I've noticed a scratchy throat coming on what can I do to prevent a cold?
Dear Coldaphobe,
First of all if you are already getting a cold there is nothing you can do to prevent the germ once it's already in your body.  You can do several things to prevent it's severity. The first thing to do when you feel an illness coming on is to run a hot bath with Epsom salt, hydrogen peroxide and ginger, (either slices of the root or ginger powder) Run the bath as  hot as you can take it without scalding your body or causing burns. The key is to detox the body by lying in the bath for at least 30 minutes. Allowing yourself to sweat.  Take some water with lemon to the bath with you to keep you from overheating and dehydrating in the bath.  Be careful about stepping out when you are too warm as well as the heat can make you feel a little light headed.  Wrap up in a warm robe and then hop into bed and continue to sweat it out. I've tried this several times and have been the only one in the house not to suffer the major symptoms cold, even after I had some scratchiness starting in my throat.  Sometimes it's all about timing and your own immune system.  If you are worn down and stressed out your body is going to react differently.  Sleep is also very important to healing. Your body heals while it sleeps so the more sleep you can get the faster you are going to heal.
You've heard the old wives tale, Starve a fever feed a cold.  Eating well is really important.  Chicken broth has some soothing properties and is an excellent comfort food when you feel a cold coming on.  Drinking peppermint tea is also a great comfort for opening your sinuses and chest of congestion.  I've read that a lot of people love to rub Vicks Vapor rub on their chest and this year have seen multiple posts on rubbing it on your feet and putting on warm socks.  My sister tried it but had no luck.  I would also suggest trying Melaleuca oil or tea tree oil on a cotton swab I use a little coconut oil too and rub just a little inside the nostril (not too deep just inside the nose.) see more below  I do know that my big ole' mountain man Grandpa and mom from the hills of West Virginia swear by rubbing just a bit right at the opening of your nose for an immediate opening of the sinus passages. She also swears it helps ward off a sinus headache.  The camphor and eucalyptus oil in the Vicks do really to help open you up so does eucalyptus on a cotton ball or in a small dish in the shower. As I mentioned above another chest and sinus opener is tea tree oil (melaleuca) I love the smell and it has multiple uses for healing. I will be blogging about it a lot. The smell is very strong and takes some getting used to but is well worth the benefits. I have recently been experimenting with it mixed with other essential oils to calm down the smell a bit. I've found a great combination including rosemary and spearmint. 
Be sure to drink lot's of green tea and water while you are sick. Avoid milk and dairy as it adds mucus to an mucus filled respiratory system.
If you are really worn down and stressed out  and these remedies don't help within a day or so  then please do what is necessary to get well. Don't let your symptoms turn into infection or pneumonia.  Seek medical attention as you could have a bigger problem or possibly the flu and need some over the counter solutions or to see your doctor.  Remember the key is to get healthy and avoid being run down so if you skip to the middle and are already worn down it will take the body longer to recover and home remedies won't be as effective as when you catch them early.
I will add a small note on the benefits of Zinc and Vitamin C.  The benefits of spending a lot of money on these products is pretty controversial once a vitamin has gone through a lot of processing the benefits that they might have had are pretty small.  I will say this from my experience.  A glass of fresh juice has lots of health benefits. Drinking no sugar added juices are a good thing as are making smoothies from fresh fruits and vegetables. A product like ziacam where you use a swab to  put some zinc inside the nasal cavity can help shorten the life of a cold if caught early enough in the cold cycle. I have literally seen it shorten a cold by a week.

Pink Eye won't go away

Dear SisterKnowItAll,
I'm on day 11 with pink eyes. I'm on my second prescription...$100 into social life and can't get close to my hubby. Pink eye is better, but this morning I have that discharge again. I've never had pink eye. How long does this crap last? What am I missing here? I wash my sheets, don't wear make up, wash my hands etc. Any good advise ?


Dear Gookyeyes

Ready for the holistic approach. Pink Eye in many cases is a cold that has moved into the eyes, You can Get a banana peel (unrefined coconut oil or Aloe Vera Gel, when you can't lie down) and lay down several times a day with the banana peel on your eyes. Also a saline wash would be a great addition to what you are doing. Use a saline mist in your sinus cavity as well. There is also a holistic product called Agrisept that is grapefruit seed extract,  that is an antibacterila. It helps the body heal itself.  You might also want to consider adding a decongestant, I will from time to time use traditional over the counter medicines to the mix as the eyes are part of the sinus and might help but pink eye when the immune system is down is going to take about 10 days or more to heal once it is bad. You might want to consider an epsom salt hydrogen peroxide and ginger bath for your whole body too. You need to relax and detox and that helps the body heal. If you don't see any improvement in 24 hours you may need to see a doctor there may be another underlying problem preventing your from healing.