does-cold-weather-make-you-sickThe seasons are changing, leaves are falling, and in some areas of the country they are already geared up for skiing.

If you tend to get sick in cold weather here are some helpful tips.

Clean Out Heating Vents

Clean out heating vents in home and in your business environment before turning the heater on. Check for mold buildup in ceilings and in attics.

Essential Oils

Behind closed doors you may be breathing polluted air. You can diffuse organic eucalyptus essential oil (1)  throughout your home or office.

It has antimicrobial activity and can help with infections, colds and sinus issues. There is no need to take antibiotics as they are not effective for treatment of a common cold.

See the Sun

Make time to see the sun.

You may not feel like moving in cold weather but it’s equally important that you don’t hibernate. Your body still needs movement, fresh air and sunshine in order to thrive.

People are more likely than not to gather indoors during winter months. Viruses can spread.

Increase Fluids

It’s time to increase fluid intake. Make sure you drink more water than alcohol during the day. Alcohol and caffeine can lead to a toxic, acidic, dehydrated internal environment.

A boomerang effect from caffeine and alcohol is that these two interfere with a good nights sleep, causing insomnia, while increasing stress levels and decreasing proper elimination. The combination of cold weather, stress and insomnia may allow viruses to invade.

Don’t Overeat

The reason we see more colds around the winter holidays is because we tend to give yourself permission to overeat. Overeating stresses the immune system and digestive system.

Foods that increase inflammation and interfere with digestion include: dairy, refined sugar, caffeine, corn, wheat and alcohol. Boost your immune system by adding in more plant based foods and homemade soups with spices such as ginger root and turmeric.

Include antioxidant rich foods such as spinach, apples, sweet potatoes and kale. Warm easy to digest soups and spices keep colds at bay.

Avoid Medications If Possible

Avoid taking Tylenol to reduce fevers.

Medications can mask symptoms.(2) A fever is a natural immune response and can boost immunity. Over the Counter Medications can cause unwanted side-effects.

There are herbs found at your health food store made for cold and flu season. These include Echinacea, that has been shown to inhibit viral activity(3)  and Elderberry, a powerful antioxidant that has antiviral properties.(4)

Take a moment to breathe

Visiting relatives during the winter months can bring out hidden emotions. Depression is one, and more prevalent with cold weather and holiday stressors. Be kind to yourself and spread the love.