There is a lot of advice around a cold - whether it's for the prevention of the disease or to relieve the symptoms when the head cold, cough and sore throat are already there. The most important tips and information we have put together in our cold ABC for you.
A - defenses
The best way to protect yourself from a cold is to strengthen the immune system. Adequate exercise in the fresh air (even in wind and weather), regular endurance sports and a healthy, varied diet with many vitamins, fiber and minerals mobilize the body's defenses. Drink at least 1.5 to 2l of water a day. True marvels to strengthen the body's defenses are also ginger and ginseng roots.
In addition, you should reduce stress factors, ensure adequate sleep and, if possible, stop nicotine and alcohol consumption. Use the cold days to indulge in sauna sessions, Kneipp treatments and relaxation exercises such as yoga or tai chi. Additional supplements from the pharmacy or the health food store can strengthen the immune system.
B - bronchitis
Bronchitis is an inflammation of the bronchi, ie the branched airways. Acute bronchitis is often associated with a cold. The bronchitis manifests itself by a strong, initially mostly dry cough until gradually mucus is produced. Often, the patient also suffer from chest pain. The inflammation of the mucous membranes is almost always caused by viruses, but also bacteria can be the cause.
In young people, the bronchitis symptoms usually resolve after ten days at the latest. However, especially in older and weakened individuals, bronchitis can become chronic. If the symptoms have not subsided after 14 days, a doctor should be consulted at the latest. The treatment of bronchitis is usually by cough-releasing drugs; Even chest compresses with oil or inhalation with saline are proven home remedies, which are to be used only with caution in case of fever (best to ask the family doctor). Otherwise, it is important to drink a lot, as much protection as possible and absolutely avoid - for example by cigarettes or exhaust fumes - polluted air. Caution: Smokers are particularly at risk of developing bronchitis.
C - Vitamin C
Vitamin C - also known as ascorbic acid - is considered a classic cold protection par excellence. Therefore, a vitamin C-rich diet for cold defense should not be missing. In addition to citrus fruits, sea buckthorn, rose hips, blackcurrants, kiwis and strawberries are rich in vitamin C. But not only a lot of fresh fruit is important, even vegetables can be a true vitamin C donor. Kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, peppers and spinach are therefore also on the menu. A little tip: Spice your salad with fresh parsley, because it also has a very high vitamin C content.
The body also needs vitamin C for many other functions, such as to form collagen or to protect the body's cells from free radicals. Vitamin C is still important for gums, stress management, ability to concentrate, nerves and blood vessels and also has a positive effect on the mood. Vitamin C thus affects the overall well-being and makes it much more difficult for a virus attack.
D - Steam bath
Even the Romans liked to relax in the steam bath. The classic Roman Caldarium is a room with mostly circular benches, whose room temperature is heated to 40-45 degrees by steam. The special feature of the Roman steam bath is the high humidity. If an additive, such as mint or eucalyptus, is added to the water vapor, it liberates the sinuses. A Roman steam bath can be found today in many sauna facilities. The Turkish steam bath is also popular. The heat dissolves muscle tension and blood circulation is promoted.
While the steam baths described here should rather be visited for the prevention of colds, a sick person at home can also do something good for themselves with a small steam bath. Simply place herbs, such as sage, in a heat-proof bowl, pour over one liter of boiling water, infuse, and keep your head over the bowl. A large towel should be placed over shoulders and head, otherwise the heat will be lost.