I hate getting sick, and the cold virus has so many mutants, that you are almost sure to get one. But you may pass it up with these 3 natural ways to prevent colds.
1. I reach for the herb, Echinacea whenever I’m exposed to someone sniffling and coughing. And it works for me. The trick is to take it early, not after you’re down with the cold. True. When I’m under a lot of stress and the people around me are sick, I take two tablets in the morning and if it is really virulent out there, I take two at night as well. Echinacea works by boosting your immune system, so take it before you’re sick. Most of the time this works — I’d say about 90% of the time for me.
I used to catch everything, especially during my child-bearing years. I had a cold once a month and my kids did too. By the time we passed it around to everyone in the family, I was sick again. That was until my last pregnancy, my fifth child was born and he never got a cold until he was about 3 years old. He never had a “runny nose” and when he did catch a cold he thought he had a bloody nose. From about 2 years old, I gave him echinacea drops in water.
Researchers have studied echinacea and some will say the herb does not help. But often this is because they tested it on subjects after they were sick. In 2007, The Pharmacy School at The University of Connecticut performed a comprehensive analysis of 14 studies and found that echinacea reduces the odds of developing a cold by 58 percent.
In one study, subjects took standardized extracts of echinacea for 7 days before being inoculated with a cold virus. (Who volunteers for that?) They continued to take echinacea for another seven days. Results showed that echinacea reduced the chances of getting the cold and the duration.
Take Echinacea at the very onset of a cold or sore throat. When the virus hits, your body is better prepared to fight it off.
has antiviral and antibacterial properties. So enjoy your garlic bread and add it to soups and sauces during cold and flu season. In a 2009 study,
146 subjects were given either a supplement of garlic containing 180 mg of allicin (the active component of garlic) or a placebo for 12 weeks. The garlic group had 24 cases of the common cold compared to 65 in the placebo group.
Better treat everyone in the family so you can all smell like garlic
3. Shitake mushroom
is a fungus used for over 2000 years in Japan, China and Korea. During the Ming dynasty it was a delicacy and the “elixir of life”, saved for the emperor and his family. It’s a good choice to prevent sickness because it has antibacterial and antiviral properties.
Supplements are available in capsules, teas, extracts and powders. You can buy them fresh or dried and add them to sauces. I add it to soups and spaghetti sauce, your kids won’t even notice.
Sometimes your immue system just gets bombarded, and then it’s hard to hang on — but give these a try and see if it helps you weather the storms. Everyone is coughing around my house and I am still holding out.