Being sick once in a while is totally normal, or is it? Even though catching a cold or flu is avoidable most of the time, the majority of people out there will tell you sick days are just part of being human.
In reality, with the knowledge available to us today we should be getting sick far less often, but with the stress and pressure of modern society we’re getting sick seasonally as if it’s the trendy thing to do! Numerous fans of the Young and Raw Facebook page have come to us over the past few weeks to ask for suggestions on how to kick their cold and flu quickly without taking cough syrup and chicken soup.
Have you ever noticed when you catch a cold, it manifests at the most inconvenient time? Likely you’ve been busy, rushing around to a job or other priority and maybe even stressed right out! Part of the reason we catch colds & flus is because our immune system is down (duh). But did you know that stress has a negative impact on the immune system to?
Stress is no bueno my friend. When you’re stressed, unhappy hormones are triggered to course through your system and throw you out of commission. If you’re not eating healthfully and nourishing your body in the way it requires to function optimally, you’re setting yourself up to be sick.
Here’s how to kick the cold & flu quickly and get on with your life!
1. Veggie Broth - Eat light when you have a cold and enjoy veggie broths with seaweeds. Try making a vegetable broth with celery, cabbage, carrots, leeks, kale, garlic, seaweeds and a mushroom blend. The lighter you eat the better while you’re feeling under the weather. Your digestive system needs a break so it can focus on healing.
2. Get probiotics into your system - eat cultured foods like miso, sauerkraut and coconut kefir. A nice healthy dose of probiotics will help to repopulate the healthy bacteria in your gut and bring ease to your digestive system. If you can pick up a dairy free probiotic supplement in your area, that’s a habit you can continue long term even once you’re feeling better.
Miso Soup Recipe:
- 2 Cups of Boiling Water
- 1 Cup Chopped Kale/Chard or both
- 1/2 Cup Green Peas
- 1 handful of Dulse
- Organic Chickpea or Adzuki Bean Miso (or organic soy)
Instructions: Bring your water to a boil and throw in your chopped greens, seaweed and peas. Let them soften and reduce your heat. Remove from heat and let cool for a few minutes and mix in 1 tbsp. of miso for each cup of water you have in your pot.
3. Drink warm water with lemon - The more you hydrate, the faster toxins can pass through you. Being dehydrated while you have a cold or the flu is possibly one of the worst things you can do for yourself and will only drag the sickness on longer. It can be tough to drink water when you’re feeling crappy but do it anyway. Having your water room temp. makes it easier.
4. Avoid meat & dairy - If your digestive system is working overtime to break down animal foods which are heavier and take longer to digest, than your healing process will be slowed. Even if you’re not fully plant-based, it’s advisable for anyone to remove animal foods while they have a cold or flu.
5. Make a green smoothie - Use anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-viral ingredients. Here’s a great recipe to try that will kill bacteria on its way down your throat and lift your energy levels a bit. Or try the Cold and Flu Relief, Pineapple Kale Smoothie here.
Healing Cleanse Smoothie:
- 1 Rib of Celery
- 1/4 Field Cucumber (this is the shorter cucumber without plastic wrap on it)
- 1 handful of Parsley
- 1 handful of Cilantro
- 1 lemon, peeled
- 1 thumb print size of ginger root
- 1-2 cups of water
If you want to sweeten it up you can add: 1/4 – 1/2 Cup of Pineapple or Blueberries (frozen or fresh)
6. Make a vegetable juice - Fasting while you have a cold or flu can help speed up the healing process, but it’s still important for you to get the nutrition your body needs to ward off whatever is attacking your system. Juicing vegetables is a great way to dose yourself with an abundance of vitamins in an easy to use format.
Here’s a recipe we like for healing the cold or flu naturally:
Cold & Flu Juice Remedy:
- 1 Rib of Celery
- 1/2 Fennel Bulb
- 1 thumb print size of ginger root
- 1 thumb print size of turmeric root
- 1/2 cup purple or green cabbage
- 1 handful of parsley
- 1/2 green apple
7. Sweat - Not by rigorously exercising though, because this will circulate more toxins through your body and make you feel worse. Instead, bring a towel or two into a sauna or steam room and sweat it out. Remember to sit on a towel and have one for wiping the sweat off of you frequently, or your skin will just re-absorb the toxins soaked up in the wood and on your skin.
8. Oil of Oregano – it comes in tincture form and tastes pretty awful but it works. Oil of oregano is a powerful anti-bacterial, anti-viral and flu remedy. You can pick it up at most health food stores.
9. Avoid store-bought juices & soda - Yes, even your classic minute maid orange juice is a no no. Most store-bought juices have been pasteurized and contain added sugar which can weaken your immune system. You really don’t need that right now. Instead, drink your veggie juice and have more water.
10. Rest – like you haven’t heard that before? I’m sure you’ve got a lot going on so it might be tough to take a day off, but in order to be your best self in the world, you’ve got to be operating at 100%. Put yourself first and get more sleep so you can get back out there and rawk life.
Bonus #11. Camu Camu Berry – natures highest source of Vitamin C on the planet. This berry has approximately 50 times the amount of Vitamin C of an orange. You can find it in powdered form at some health food stores or online. Our friends and herbalists Yarrow and Angela Willard at HaromincArts.ca sell it in their online store. You can mix it into your vegetable juice or smoothie and only need a very small amount.