February 9, 2011

cold & flu "myths" examined

every year the winter strikes, and every year we get sick. whether that be a cold, the flu, or just a cough, it SUCKS to be sick. it hurts to leave your bed. you're cold and then you're hot. you can't tell if you're hungry, or if maybe you feel sick. so when it comes to preventing cold&flu or treating them, there are obviously many different things that we rely on. but are we doing the right thing, or are we practicing something that doesn't even work?

1. chicken soup helps relieve symptoms

this in fact is TRUE. so bring on that chicken noodle soup PLEASE. sorry though - chicken noodle soup doesn't help due to your amazingly original recipe. it helps because when you lean over a bowl of warm, steamy soup, the humidified air helps break up nasal congestion. along with the obvious fact that soup is a liquid, and drinking liquids helps keep you hydrated and get better!

2. going outside with wet hair when it's cold can make you sick

this is FALSE. colds are caused by a virus, not by doing snow angels with soaking wet hair. actually, in the winter you are more likely to get sick by staying inside because you're close to people and therefore passing germs!

3. antibiotics can treat colds and flu

this is also FALSE. colds and flu are caused by a virus, and antibiotics treat bacterial infections. antibiotics will only help with the muscle and head aches. 

4. you can spread a cold or flu even without symptoms

TRUE. 20 to 30% of people carrying the influenza virus have no symptoms which means they can transmit the virus without even knowing. it takes 2 to 3 days for symptoms to appear, and before that time the virus is still bouncing around to anyone around you

just thought i'd share some advice during these last winter months! stay healthy :)