Posted January 12, 2015
You can get a cold virus any time of the year. Once you get a cold, it’s frustrating to deal with the drippy nose, scratchy throat, watery eyes or hacking cough. Adopt an offensive strategy to prevent cold viruses from attacking or wearing down your resistance. Here are six strategies for success:
- Feed a fever – A cold virus often is accompanied by fever and chills. Traditional home remedies suggest starving a fever and feeding a cold. But your body needs nutritious foods to help the immune system fight a fever. Eat a bowl of chicken noodle soup and incorporate coconut oil in your diet, both contain lauric acid, a fatty acid known for its healing properties.
- Don’t cut the caffeine – Beverages containing caffeine are high in antioxidants that boost your immune system. But since caffeine also dehydrates, drink less than 400 milligrams daily. (That’s about four cups of coffee or two cans of energy drink.) Remember to avoid consuming sweetened caffeinated drinks, as sugar can inhibit the immune system.
- Wash your hands – Germs are commonly spread through hand contact. Wash your hands several times daily. If you don’t have access to soap and water, use a generous squirt of hand sanitizer. Thoroughly scrub your hands, especially the skin between the fingers.
- Dodge airborne germs – Many virus germs are spread through the air. If someone nearby is sneezing or coughing, move away. Pull your collar or sleeve close to your nose and mouth, and breathe through the fabric for up to five minutes until the germs have disseminated. Since germs can reside on cloth for up to 48 hours, wash the clothing item or avoid wearing it for several days.
- Keep away from sick people – If a co-worker, friend or family member is sick, keep your distance. If that’s not possible, avoid touching your face until you can wash or sanitize your hands.
- Disinfect surfaces – To avoid spreading germs, wipe off public surfaces with sanitizing wipes at least twice weekly. Disinfect door knobs, computer keyboards, table tops, coffeepot and refrigerator handles, TV remotes and your phone. Use a different wipe for your hands to avoid cross-contamination.