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Saturday, January 10, 2009

How to get over the Flu (Part 1)

Sometimes you have a viral flu or a cold that just won't quit. Here's some tricks I use to get through it.
  1. Zicam - cold prevention drugs ONLY work right up front (read the bottle). After the initial symptoms, they're worthless.
  2. Get warm - at first sign of a cold coming (scratchy throat, achy body, cough), get in bed and get very warm under the covers. Cook yourself a little bit, although not too much; when you're extra warm (not just comfortably warm), your body doesn't have to spend energy on keeping your body temperature up. Also, as you feel hotter, you tend to feel more lethargic and tired.
  3. Get horrizontal - of course the next step ... keeps fluid from getting into your lungs and developing a cough.
  4. Stay in bed - if you do have the flu, eventually you're going to get cabin fever. Get books on tape, movies, and anything that will help your mind stay active but keep your body inactive.
  5. Take more vitamins - the rationale is that you're drinking a lot of fluid and you're probably cycling out lots of nutrients in this process. Also, taking extra Vitamin C doesn't help according to studies I've read, but I like to suck on them to get their acidity to kill nasty bacteria in my throat.
  6. Coughing - if you do develop a cough (and are trying to cut down on the amount of medicine you take like me), take some medicine to help you sleep at night, but during the day just suck on cough drops.
  7. Multi-Symptom Drugs (like Nyquil) - avoid. If you can't, try taking half the recommended amount before taking a full dose. You probably don't need the full amount. Drink a lot of water with them as alcohol dehydrates you.
  8. Showers - hot showers or baths are a wonderful alternative to drugs. Kills germs and cleans the sinuses ... or ...
  9. My sinus trick - a pan of hot water that's steaming and a little mouthwash. Clears me right up.
  10. Drink Fluids - OJ, lemonade, etc. Avoid apple juice from concentrate as this is usually almost entirely sugar.
  11. Fruits - if you can put together any fresh fruits, this is the same thing -- foods that are 90% water are great. They're easy to digest and help keep you hydrated.
  12. Protein - your body is using up a lot of this. I drink some health shakes to keep on top of this but there are MANY sources.
  13. Chicken Noodle Soup - I've read this from several sources : the stuff has enzymes that help shorten colds.
  14. Nose pain - you can get simple saline for your nose to shoot up and clean out your sinuses. Its a little gross to think about but feels like heaven when you're sick. (No I haven't tried some of the other nose-clearing items on the market.)
Thoughts? Suggestions? Disagree?

Part 2: How to be sick (few more suggestions)

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