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Want to avoid the winter coughs and colds? Here are some top tips to cure cold’s and flu’s over winter…

#1.  Vitamin C with zinc has been shown to reduce the severity of the symptoms of a cold if taken for five days.  Recommended dose is 1000mg of vitamin C and 10mg of zinc.

#2.  The last thing you will feel like doing when you have a cold is exercising, but a study has shown that going on a 45-minute walk when you don’t normally do much exercise boosts your immune system. The effect can last for up to three hours.

#3.  Having beta glucans in your diet – found in baker’s yeast, oats, rye, barley, wheat and shiitake mushrooms – or in supplement form, on a daily basis, has been shown to reduce both bacterial infections and viruses. And, if taken when unwell, beta glucans can shorten the length of the illness.

#4.  Get plenty of lysine, an essential amino acid that works to boost the immune system and helps stimulate the body’s own antibodies to fight illness. It’s found in plain yoghurt and skimmed milk, apricots, dried apples and mangos, and fish.

#5.  Start taking probiotics. A recent study showed that people with colds recover more quickly and have less severe symptoms when they take them.

#6.  To soothe your throat, make a hot water drink with honey, ginger and lemon.

#7.  Steam inhalation may sound old-fashioned, but it’s a powerful way to help clear mucus and soothe irritated airways.

#8.  Drink plenty of fluids, as it’s easy to get dehydrated when you’re ill due to fluid loss caused by having a high temperature and increased nasal secretions.

#9.  When you have a cold, sleep with an extra pillow, as this will help with the drainage of nasal passages.

#10. Try sleeping with a window open, as germs and viruses can breed more quickly in warm temperatures.  It’s a myth that cold weather causes a cold and keeping fresh air circulating will help create a healthier sleeping environment.

#11. One final and important tip…get plenty of rest. Proper rest can boost your immune system to get you feeling better sooner.  Sleep helps your body better fight infections that cause you to get sick.

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Dr Sohère Roked

Author Dr Sohère Roked

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