Oysters For Your Cold


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Cold season has begun in my house and now in my daughters.  Everywhere we go, there is someone coughing, hacking and blowing.  How do we teach our children or grandchildren in my case to cough into your elbow or keep a kleenex handy for blowing.  Now in my travels throughout the World Wide Web you can find lots and lots of information, and some of it is quite surprising, but on the whole there is some key advice that I am sure has been handed down from generation to generation.  Some preventative ideas are pretty basic knowledge, and common sense but keep reading and I have one here that will surprise you, I did a real double take.

Sleep

Sleep regulates the release of the hormone cortisol, which stimulates cells that boost the immune system.  And a well-tuned immune system is crucial for defending against the cold virus.

Getting at least seven hours of shut-eye is the easiest way to steer clear of the common cold. In fact, a recent study indicates that people who fall short are nearly three times as likely to catch a cold. To make bedtime even more healthful, try using a protective pillow cover, which can help prevent a stuffy, runny nose.

If you have trouble falling asleep, try a mind-calming exercise. For instance: “Go over everything you did during the day, but do it in reverse order”.

Exercise

Research has shown that moderate exercise — 30 to 90 minutes most days of the week — increases immune function and reduces your chances of catching a cold. Key word: moderate.

Prolonged high-intensity exercise can actually make you more susceptible to sickness.

Don’t swear off workouts if you do get a simple head cold. A 2009 study at the University of Illinois found that moderate exercise can also help you recover from a cold more quickly than normal.

A Hot and Cold Shower

Temperature fluctuations jump-start your immune system, says Donielle Wilson, a naturopathic doctor in New York City. At the end of a shower, stand under the hottest stream you can take for 30 seconds, then turn the temperature to cold for 10 seconds. Repeat three times, finishing with cold.

A steamy shower helps keep nasal passages clear and can prevent cold-causing bugs from taking up residence in your nose.

Oysters

These mollusks contain more of the mineral zinc than any other food, and zinc has been proven to support and enhance the immune system. Eating just a single oyster will give you a whopping 13 milligrams of zinc.

That said, since it may be difficult to work them into your diet regularly (oyster sandwich for lunch?), look to zinc-fortified breakfast cereals, baked beans, and pumpkin seeds to help you get the recommended eight milligrams a day.

Zinc is also effective when taken at the first signs of a cold. Oral lozenges that contain the mineral, like those made by Cold-Eeze and Zicam, have been shown to decrease the duration of colds.

http://www.realsimple.com is where I found this segment of Health Prevention.  Great stuff over there.

Vitamin D

According to a 2009 study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, people with low levels of this vitamin, which helps to regulate the immune system, are more susceptible to catching colds. (The vitamin has also been shown to increase calcium absorption and reduce inflammation.)

Multivitamins typically contain 400 international units (IU) of vitamin D, which falls within the current recommended daily allowance (RDA) of 200 to 600 IU. However, experts now suggest taking a 1,000-IU supplement on top of a multivitamin, as strong evidence indicates that the current RDA is too low.

And one final tip and this is my own way to get rid of my cold.  Find someone to give your cold to, no this isn’t nice, but misery does love company.  My advice would be to not give to your spouse – they really can be big babies and you don’t need that on top of the cold you already have.

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