Natural Ways To Prevent and Treat Colds and Flu


Seems as if everywhere we turn someone is sick with either a cold or flu. Don’t worry, Spring is on the way!

In the meantime, there are natural ways you can help keep yourself and your loved ones healthy.

Go out in the sun for at least ten minutes a day. When our skin is exposed to sunlight we manufacture vitamin D. Vitamin D is one of the most important vitamins and is necessary to maintain good health. It is helpful in preventing viruses, keeping our bones strong and preventing cancer and heart disease. Most people have a vitamin D deficiency.

Exercise each day. A brisk walk will really help. You will be outside and exposed to sunlight. You will feel less stressed and will boost your immune system.

There are certain foods which are particularly effective at preventing viruses and diminishing the severity of the viral infection. Elderberry is great. It can be consumed as tea, wine or jelly. Anything containing anthrocyanins (which provide the red color) is a good choice -red grape juice,red cherry juice or pomegranate juice are a few I like.

Add some ground flax seeds to your cereal (source of omega 3 and fiber and phytoestrogens)

Eat a couple of Brazil nuts which contain selenium everyday.

Peppermint is also an anti viral. Make a nice cup of peppermint tea or eat a mint containing peppermint oil such as Altoids.

Yogurt containing active cultures also is very beneficial in combating a viral infection. Organic is best and the yogurt must contain the live cultures.

Shiitake mushrooms have anti viral properties. Add them to free range or organic chicken broth along with a few cloves of chopped raw garlic, onion, carrots, parsley, oregano, cilantro and whatever else you would like in a chicken soup.

I drink three glasses of pure tangerine juice when I have been exposed to a virus along with something containing zinc (A little Total cereal works.) I normally would not advocate a processed cereal but egg or shellfish (good sources of zinc) do not go well with tangerine juice.

Serve some pineapple for dessert or snack.

1 Tbs apple cider vinegar in 7 ozs of water in the morning and at night is also a good preventative. Alternate gargling and swallowing.

Relax; eat slowly, mindfully and nutritiously. Enjoy every day… it is a gift! I wish you good health!

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Helen Brophy

Helen has a BS from the University of Rhode Island with graduate studies in physical science, chemistry, and counseling. For the past 20 yrs. she has studied and advocated a natural all-inclusive, responsible approach to maintaining a healthy body and lifestyle. Her belief and approach includes obtaining a rich balance encompassing all aspects of life through nutrition, exercise, spiritual and mental development, and responsible environmental habits.