Coming down with a nasty cold or flu bug can easily derail even the “healthiest” among us. Both diseases of the respiratory tract and caused by viruses, colds and flus often have similar symptoms, although the flu is typically more severe and can sometimes lead to dangerous complications.
It’s estimated that anywhere from 5 percent to 20 percent of Americans will get the flu each season, whereas Americans suffer from upwards of 1 billion colds a year (the common cold can actually be caused by more than 200 different viruses!).[i].
Antibiotics, which only treat bacterial infections, are useless against colds and flus … and one of the leading antiviral drugs often recommended for the flu – Tamiflu – has been said to have only “modest” to no effectiveness, with researchers stating it “might be regarded as optional for reducing the symptoms of seasonal influenza.”[ii]
If you start to come down with the sore throat, cough, sinus pressure, headaches, fatigue and aches and pains that can accompany colds and the flu, this doesn’t mean you have no choice but to suffer.
There are plenty of effective natural remedies for colds and flu available that are worth trying, and most are simple and inexpensive, too.
This mineral plays a key role in supporting immune function, and if you have a zinc deficiency your immune function may be depressed, making your more susceptible to colds and flu.
Research shows that zinc (lozenges or syrup) may help to reduce the duration and severity of the common cold, especially when taken within 24 hours of the onset of symptoms. Those who take zinc are less likely to have their cold persist for seven days, while zinc supplementation for five months also has been found to reduce the incidence of colds in children.[iii]
In addition to supplements, good sources of zinc include oysters, red meat, poultry, beans, nuts, crab and lobster.
10. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that has been found to reduce the duration and severity of common cold symptoms. In people exposed to extreme physical stress (such as running a marathon or skiing), vitamin C appears to have an even greater effect and may cut your risk of cold in half.[iv]
Citrus fruits, red and green peppers, kiwi, strawberries, broccoli, cantaloupe and tomatoes are good dietary sources of vitamin C.
Garlic has both antibacterial and antiviral properties, and research has shown that those who took garlic every day for three months had fewer colds than those taking a placebo.[v]
8. Green Tea
Green tea is rich in antioxidants and other phytochemicals, including some that have antiviral properties. Research suggests that drinking one to five cups of green tea daily may help prevent the flu, particularly in children.[vi]
7. Vitamin D
Although it’s most known for its role in bone health, vitamin D also plays a role in your body’s innate immunity, including the prevention of respiratory tract infections like colds and flu. Research shows that people with higher vitamin D levels are less likely to have recently had a cold or the flu.[vii] At least one study also suggests that supplementing with vitamin D3 during the winter (when sunlight, your body’s natural source of vitamin D is more likely to be scarce) may reduce the incidence of the flu, especially in school-aged children.[viii]
Mushrooms, including reishi, maitake, shiitake and even common white button varieties, contain immune-boosting compounds, such as beta-glucans, as well as anti-viral properties that may help to ward off colds and the flu.
The friendly bacteria known as probiotics, which reside largely in your digestive tract, not only help to support a strong immune system, but also may reduce your body’s inflammatory response to the cold virus, thereby lessening symptoms. In one study of college students living in close proximity during a cold outbreak, those who took probiotic supplements had colds that went away two days faster, with symptoms that were 34 percent less severe, than students taking a placebo.[ix]
A review of research from 10 clinical trials also found that probiotics may help to prevent upper respiratory tract infections like the common cold.[x]
In addition to supplements, probiotics are found in fermented foods, such as yogurt, kefir and traditionally made sauerkraut.
Elderberry contains immune-stimulating antioxidants, along with anti-inflammatory and anti-viral compounds that might be effective against both the cold and the flu. In one study, patients taking an elderberry extract syrup had their flu symptoms resolve four days earlier than those taking a placebo[xi] – a valuable improvement if you’re suffering the ravages of the flu.
In Canada, the natural herb ginseng can be sold with a health claim for cold and flu prevention. This immune-supportive herb, in particular North American ginseng, has been found to reduce both the incidence of colds and the severity of symptoms, along with the number of days cold symptoms are experienced.[xii]
2. Regular Exercise
Exercises boost immune health, and as such has been found to cut your risk of catching a cold by nearly 50 percent when done regularly. Further, regular exercisers tend to have less severe symptoms if they do come down with a cold.[xiii]
The miserable symptoms that you go through when fighting off a cold or the flu – like stuffy nose and sore throat – are a result of your body’s inflammatory response to the virus, rather than the result of the virus itself. Proteolytic enzymes not only have potent anti-inflammatory properties, they also fight viruses and support your immune system.
Proteolytic enzymes are produced naturally by your pancreas and are used by your body to “eat up” scar tissue, cleanse toxins from your blood, fight viruses and improve your immune system, so you’re likely to get sick less often. Unfortunately, your body stops producing optimal amounts of proteolytic enzymes sometime in your late 20s, which is why taking a proteolytic enzyme supplement is a very smart move, especially if you’re in your 40s and beyond.
Heal-n-Soothe is our top-recommended solution, providing you pure and powerful proteolytic enzymes … along with the 11 OTHER most powerful and natural anti-inflammatories to give your health a boost.
Fat pills in disguise! That’s what many common medications really are.
It’s the ultimate medical double cross. You take a pill to get rid of one health problem – allergies, insomnia, or even heart disease – but while you’re working on that your weight spirals out of control, giving you a whole new set of problems.
You feel hungry all the time. Your appetite is ferocious, but your metabolism seems to have gone on vacation. Week after week, the numbers on your scale keep going up.
It may be years before you think to complain to your doctor. Even then, you might not hear what you need to know: Weight gain is a commonly overlooked side effect of everyday medications.
Even if you discover the truth, you’ll still have to deal with the pounds. A better plan? Know ahead of time which four common medications are secret fat pills that make you pack on the pounds and fight back against these unwanted weight gain drugs with an all-natural solution.
More than 13 million people went to their doctor in 2010 to complain about allergies. It’s estimated that 60 million Americans suffer from allergies, making them the fifth most common chronic complaint.
You may reach for over the counter allergy pills as a first line of defense for your nose when the sniffles strike… but you’re not doing your belly any favors. While these pills may help stop the sneezes, they also help you pack on the pounds by altering your appetite.
The antihistamine diphenhydramine increases your appetite as long as you’re on the medication. It’s found in Benadryl, Alka-Seltzer Plus Allergy and many generic antihistamine products. Instead of pure allergy relief, you get the chance to pack on “mystery” pounds that seem to spring up out of nowhere.
Sleep deprivation is a quick path to weight gain. If you’re short on sleep, you eat an average of 300 extra calories a day. While it may not seem like much, those 300 calories represent “a substantial increase in energy intake that, if maintained chronically, would lead to rapid and robust weight gain,” according to sleep researcher Eve Van Cauter.
Making matters worse is that most of those calories come in the form of high-fat and high-sugar junk foods. Ice cream is a favorite food of the sleep deprived and so is fast food. Thus, turning to sleeping pills is a smart weight loss choice … or is it?
It turns out sleeping pills are actually weight gain drugs that boost your appetite even more. Common over the counter pills like Sominex, Unisom, and Nytol all stimulate your appetite. Add the calorie hike you’re already getting from being tired in the first place and this one-two punch is a sure path to unwanted and unwelcome pounds.
Being overweight can make you feel depressed … but don’t count on antidepressants to give you any help with the scale.
Leading antidepressants such as Paxil, Pexeva and Celexa actually work to increase your appetite. They are SSRIs that contain paroxetine and citalopram, which modify your perception of hunger. Other antidepressants that work on dopamine won’t give you the same weight gain problems these pills will, but the likelihood of extra pounds isn’t always highlighted as a potential side of treatment. As a result, you may find yourself feeling better but looking worse.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in America, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Unfortunately, heart medications can also cause unwanted weight gain.
The top culprits are dedicated beta-blockers such as Lopressor and Tenormin, which really should be called fat pills! Researchers believe these drugs reduce your overall metabolic rate, making it harder for you to burn calories and lose weight. Sadly, weight gain isn’t even mentioned as a common side effect by top medical sites like the Mayo Clinic, leaving you in the dark as to why you’re putting on extra pounds while you take heart pills.
Fight “Fat Pills” and Weight Gain Drugs
These sneaky fat pills make you pack on pounds by altering your body’s basic chemistry. They pump you full of artificial compounds and sabotage your metabolism. To fight back, you have to be ready to meet these weight gain drugs at their own level with sound cellular science.
What you need isn’t another pill – it’s a spray. ThinMist™ is a revolutionary mouth spray that floods your body with the critical minerals, amino acids, and bio-identical hormones you need to fight drugs that make you fat. Just like those sneaky pills, ThinMist™ goes to work at the cellular level – but for your benefit.
It may seem hard to believe that a simple spray could kick your body back into fat-burning mode … but then again, you probably didn’t believe that simple, everyday pills could make you fat, either. Let your scale give you the ultimate proof…
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American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology. Allergy Statistics. Retrieved 2012 April 26.
Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Allergy Facts and Figures. Retrieved 2012 April 26.
Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Heart Disease Facts. 2012 Mar 23.
Hellmich, N. Sleep-deprived people eat 300 more calories a day. USA Today. 2011 Mar 23.
Nuzzo, R. Pills That Put On Weight. Reader’s Digest. 2012 Mar; p. 38.
MayoClinic.com. Beta-Blockers. 2010 Dec 16.