Happiness and Wellbeing, Health

Starve a cold, feed a fever? Or is it the other way?

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How many times have you heard starve a cold, feed a fever? Or maybe it’s starve a fever, feed a cold?  Doesn’t seem to matter because when you need to remember which is correct you are sick and feel horrible.

Mom arrived two weeks ago from Cleveland and here we are both sick with the flu/cold or whatever this gunk is.  I usually skate through without catching anything but not this year.  I definitely got caught.

The answer to the starve a cold, feed a fever or feed a cold, starve a fever is neither.  Starving in any form is generally not a good idea but especially a bad idea when you are under the weather.  The theory behind this saying is that by not eating, our body does not have to work as hard to heal itself. The truth is that eating a balanced diet versus starving is the best way to quickly get back to feeling well.

In addition to keeping your nutrition on track, these tips can help you kick the cold or flu to the curb.  If at any time, you feel that you are not able to breathe, have chest pain or are feeling light-headed or the bug is hanging around longer than you feel it should, please get to the doctor right away.

  • Rest.  The number one thing you can do for your body while fighting an illness is to rest.  I know sometimes this is not possible if you have little ones running around or care for others but do the best you can. Go to bed as soon as possible in the evening and try to get a good night’s sleep.
  • Stay hydrated.  Continue drinking water but avoid coffee, alcohol and caffeinated sodas such as Coke or Pepsi.  Warm lemon water or decaffeinated tea with honey can help to loosen congestion.
  • Sore throat.  Try a saltwater gargle by adding 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt dissolved in water to provide relief from a sore or scratchy throat.
  • Sip warm liquids such as soup, broth or tea.  This can provide soothing relief while also helping to loosen congestion.

As for me?  Right now I am sipping on green tea with a teaspoon of local Skipper honey in it with a blanket wrapped around my shoulders writing this article.  The next thing on my list? To go back to bed and rest.

Have a wonderful week!


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