We are almost to mid-January (um, already??) and I’ve somehow managed to not be hit with the dreaded flu, although it seems like pretty much everyone around me has. Yikes! The worst I get is allergies (seasonal my ass), which were really bad when we were having some nasty dry winds this past month, but have since let up now that it has finally (FINALLY!) rained in SoCal and we have some moisture in the air. I think we all can agree that being sick is the absolute worst– you feel gross, nothing tastes right, you don’t (or can’t) do anything and you just feel blah for several days.
Self-care during this season is SUPER important because the last thing your busy schedule needs is a sick day… or five. While we may want to power through it by continuing to work, sometimes you just gotta chill so it doesn’t get any worse or maybe you think you’re being selfish by putting your needs first (not true!). Keep reading for my 5 best practices and self-care tips for when you’re not feeling too hot so you can get back on your feet quickly, strongly and healthy>>
Get Your Fluids
When you were sick did your mom always tell you to drink more water? Mine did. I think that’s just what moms do. I’d take a couple sips to appease her and then probably not touch it again but as I’ve grown older and [hopefully] wiser, I’ve learned the importance of drinking fluids, especially water, when sick. Dehydration is a real thing, all.
I always add fresh lemon to my water because A) It makes it taste good and I actually want to drink it and B) Lemon has antibacterial properties to help control unhealthy bacteria AKA those icky germs floating around your office or public places.
Hot tea is also really good to drink when you’re not feeling great as it has herbs that can help relieve flu symptoms as well. When I start feeling a sore throat coming on, I reach for a lemon-honey green tea. If I’m feeling stuffy, peppermint tea helps to alleviate my stuffed nose. Ginger tea can help with an upset stomach Plus, a cup of hot tea is just so soothing.
Essential oils have become my bff and I am a total believer in aromatherapy. Not only do they make my house smell amazing when diffusing, but can be used for self-care IMO they can help relieve cold and flu symptoms as well. For a stuffed up nose, I like to diffuse peppermint. At bedtime and to help calm, I’ll diffuse lavender. Diffusing eucalyptus oil can be soothing for a cough and another favorite, tea tree, is an antibacterial and can help clean the air. You can even mix these together or create your own custom oil blend depending on your needs. Find several oil diffusion blends for cold and flu relief here.
If you don’t have a diffuser, you can also add oils to a bath, a bowl of hot water for steam inhalation or even a hot or cold compress.
I also use essential oils on my skin (usually under my nose, around my temples or even on my neck) with Perfectly Posh Skin Stick Pamper Your Cold, which has a mix of peppermint, tea tree, eucalyptus and citrus. Not only does it soothe your senses but your skin as well as it is formulated with shea butter. This one is a godsend for when you’re stuffed up! They also offer The Immunator Skin Stick for flu and cold relief as well.
Vitamins & Supplements
For the last few months, I have been taking LoveBug Probiotics Colds Suck, an immunity boosting probiotic supplement fortified with zinc, high levels of vitamin C and echinacea (an herb often used for cold treatment). This supplement not only helps to regulate my stomach bacteria (read my full LoveBug Probiotics review here) but also helps to strengthen my immune system. Since taking these I have not gotten sick (:knocks on wood:) and I truly believe it’s because of the boost this product provides.
Another vitamin that’s a good immunity booster is vitamin D, which comes from the sun, fish, egg yolks and vitamin D-fortified foods such as milk and orange juice. I’m not a doctor and this is merely a suggestion, but if you’ve been constantly sick or feeling run-down, you may want to check with your doctor to see if you have a vitamin D deficiency and need to take supplements.
Get some R&R
There’s been countless times when I’ve seen someone come into the workplace or classroom super sick, coughing everywhere and basically making everyone around them afraid to touch anything or even breathe. Do yourself and everyone a favor and stay home. Rest up, binge-watch your favorite Netflix or Hulu shows, don’t make things any worse and hopefully the next day you’ll be feeling more like yourself.
When I’m feeling down or sick, sometimes a little new-new helps make me feel better and cheers me up.Treat yourself to the handbag you’ve been eyeing or that pretty blush palette, a fresh mani-pedi, an ice cream sundae or whatever it is that’s going to make you feel good. You don’t need to go too crazy with the self-indulgence but a splurge here and there might just be what the doctor ordered (I wish!). It’s okay, you deserve it.
SAVE PIN FOR LATER
How do you stay healthy during the dreaded cold and flu season? If you’ve been hit with it, what self-care tips and remedies have you found that work best for you?