As we are all but humans, we all know the pains of getting sick. Maybe you’ve been fortunate to never have caught the flu or maybe you’re just very resilient to disease. For those of us that are not that fortunate, having a resource that explains some of the best ways to get over the flu quickly with as little pain, vomiting, coughing and nose running as possible. Note that this information is general information on how to combat flu-like symptoms and if you feel that your illness could be worse than just the flu, go to your doctor immediately for diagnosis and treatment. That being said, here are the top ten ways to combat the flu.
Doctors and prominent figures alike agree that fasting is the best way to tackle the flu. Mark Twain is documented to have fasted during periods when he had the flu and he recommended it to those he knew. James Balch, M. D. and Phyllis Balch, CNC authored the book, Prescription for Natural Healing and in their book they stated, "When you feel a cold or illness coming on or are just depressed – fast!" The reason that fasting helps you get over your flu quicker is because it eliminates toxins in your body that may have given you the flu in the first place. As you eat and drink nothing, your body sweats out, (among other means of relieving itself of the disease) the virus. If you can stand a grumbling stomach and being incredibly parched for one or two days when sick, you’ll find yourself feeling the effects of the illness wearing away quicker than had you maintained your usual eating habits.
2. Call Out Sick
This may seem like a no-brainer to most people but you’d be absolutely surprised at how many people are absolutely insistent upon going to work even when they’re suffering the worst flu symptoms. Justification may be that you need the money or that you have too much work to do. Regardless of these trivial matters, your health is of paramount concern when you’re sick. If you go into work, you’re not only not letting your body recuperate when it needs it the most, you’re also dramatically increase the risk of spreading the flu virus across your workplace. Whether you care about your co-workers or not, going into work can be a serious impedance to your prolonged health. The main factor to consider here is what happens if you get someone sick and in turn, they get you sick when you return to work? You’ll have to combat the flu all over again. Another major reason people that get sick and go to work wind up sick again shortly thereafter is because when you’re sick, you’re going to be spreading germs across all of your workstation and work supplies.
While resting is a distant second to sleeping when you have the flu, even lying down and watching TV is better than being up and doing anything that you’d normally be doing. Do not go out with friends, do not cook yourself dinner and definitely do not try doing seriously strenuous activities. When your body is suffering flu symptoms, it is already fighting the illness. By staying stationary and remaining in a groggy, quiet state, you give your body total control over the battle against the flu. Resting under plenty of covers is ideal, even if it’s tremendously uncomfortable for you at the time. This will let you sweat out the virus that much quicker.
4. Drink LOTS of Fluids
While fasting is a doctor approved method of getting over the flu, oftentimes people will demand some type of nourishment before the day’s close, especially when they’re sick. Of all things you can do, drinking lots of water and even flat ginger ale for something to mix up the monotony is ideal. Water will help cool down your interior body temperature and it will also give you more fluid to sweat out. The reason fasting is ideal is because if you drink or eat nothing during your illness, you’ll literally purge your system of all available resources until whatever made you sick is gone. Water is best for a flu sufferer but ginger ale is good too. Carbonated ginger ale tends to upset the stomach when it’s already pivoting in on itself, so definitely let the ginger ale sit for a while and lose its bubbles before trying to put it down.
5. Do Not Exert Yourself
There are always things to do around the house and there will always be insistent people who want to go to work despite their condition. To get over the flu the quickest, one must get plenty of rest and sleep. Your body is in need of every ounce of energy that it can pull. By appropriating its resources to things like walking, talking and moving, you’re using much needed energy that could have been devoted to getting you better! Moving when it’s only absolutely necessary, staying under covers and trying your best to stay stationary is ideal.
6. Eat Fruits
Again, going back to fasting – if you can’t do it, there are some things you can eat that won’t impede the healing process as badly as others: fruit is one great source of vitamins that your body can use when fighting a flu. Fruits high in vitamin-C are especially good – they take the least amount of energy to digest through your system. Oranges, lemons (do you like lemonade? This is your chance to load up) and other citrus fruits should be eating ten out of ten times when compared to taking a vitamin-C pill. Pills simply don’t digest the same way through your system as natural fruit juice does. Skip the vitamin pills and go right to the source.
7. Eat Chicken Noodle Soup Broth
At this point, if you’re fantasizing about Chicken Noodle Soup, there’s no chance that you’re going to make it through a day of fasting. Chicken noodle soup broth is especially high in proteins yet easier to keep down than solid food when you’ve got the flu. If you eat one food that has protein in it while sick with the flu, chicken noodle soup broth should be it. Note – don’t eat the noodles, the chicken or the veggies if you’re having violent attacks of vomiting, you’ll only find them come out on the next run to the bathroom and become disheartened knowing that your precious nutrients are now being flushed away. Chicken noodle broth stands the best chance of sitting in your stomach and staying there when you’ve got a bad case of the flu.
This is the single greatest thing you can do for your body when you’ve got the flu. By sleeping, you appropriate resources unconsciously to fighting the illness that you cannot delegate even when resting. Your body’s autonomous functions are at their all-time low when sleeping so your immune system will be at peak performance when you’re getting shut-eye. In addition to giving your immune system extra resources, sleep has the distinct advantage of letting you pass through your illness without even realizing that you’re sick. While sleeping you’ll also be sweating: this will also help in relieving you of the flu.
9. Take Cough Medicine
There are a couple of reasons why cough medicine is good for you when you’ve got the flu. First, it will of course keep you from coughing. Coughing when you’re ill can sometimes make you worse off than you were: stress on your larynx and throat can result in infection and what started as the flu has just become strep throat. That’s not what you’re looking for when you’re trying to get over the flu quickly. By taking cough medicine you will be numbing your throat and coating your esophagus with medicine designed to sedate it. The second reason why cough medicine is good for when you have the flu is because it can sedate you, not just your throat. By getting a strong brand of cough medicine such as Nyquil or Robotussin you can take advantage of the side effects labeled on the bottles, "May cause drowsiness". As you should be sleeping anyway, if you have a flu and can’t get to sleep – try some cough medicine. It may do the trick.
10. Put Your Head Over Boiling Water
By boiling water in a pot, throwing a towel over your head and then putting the towel over the pot of boiling water you are creating a tight little area of humidification that you’ll be breathing in deeply. This is an age old method of decongesting the throat so if you have a bad cough and sniffles during your flu, try this method. If you happen to have a room humidifier that’s great too – it’s the same concept. The advantage of the boiling water is that it’s a lot of humidity in a small space.