"The North Wind doth blow and we shall have snow.."

Instead of dreading the months ahead, let this be a winter during which you can enjoy those long winter walks, coming home at dusk to a warm home and tea and toast, making snowmen, having snowball fights, cuddling up with a good book in front of the fire when the wind howls outside or even clearing the garden ready for the year ahead. By following the suggestions set out below you will increase your chances of enjoying a winter in which you are free from illness.

"Caring for yourself in the cold months ahead.

As the nights close in, the weather gets colder and many, some would say, 'sensible' animals prepare to sleep through the winter; the bacteria and viruses etc. that result in colds, sore throats, coughs and 'flu' seem to wake up and stretch their legs ready for their winter job of causing illness. To many of us this is how it seems yet in reality disease causing agents are around us all the time they don't migrate in the summer, returning each winter as many of our birds do. They are only able to cause such havoc in the winter months because we are more susceptible at this time of the year.

There are many things we can do to help boost our immune systems to discourage invasion by viruses etc. Many of these things we instinctively know we should do but finding the time and motivation is often difficult. And yet once we start to care properly for ourselves the easier it becomes as we begin to benefit from the small changes we make, so as the saying goes "don't delay, start today!"

A few tips on reducing your susceptibility to illness and strengthening your immune system:


Do's:

  • Take regular appropriate exercise.
  • Drink plenty of water daily even if your aren't thirsty.
  • Take adequate rest, take a tip from the animals and go to bed earlier.
  • Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables to boost your levels of Vitamin C "An apple a day keeps the doctor away"!.
  • Take Vitamin C supplements (adults 1000mg daily)
  • Increase your intake of foods rich in Vitamin D, the sunlight vitamin.
  • Laugh and have fun, share your life with those you love and who make you happy.
  • Get out in the fresh air and sunshine as often as you can a short walk in your lunch break can be very beneficial
  • Wash your hands regularly, especially after using the toilet and before preparing or eating food.
  • Wear clothes appropriate to the weather

Don'ts:
  • Carry on regardless if you are feeling ill. Rest for a day or two longer if necessary.
  • Burn the candle a both ends
  • Eat too much of those foodstuffs you know aren't beneficial such as sugar, caffeine, alcohol etc
  • Allow yourself to become chilled or damp.

How to care for yourself if you do become ill:
  • At the first sign of illness take 10 drops of Echinacae 3 times daily.
  • Rest at home.
  • Keep warm.
  • Increase your intake of Vitamin C by a factor of 3.
  • Take a good multivitamin/mineral supplement that contains zinc.
  • Drink plenty of fluids, water, fruit juices and drinks containing honey are beneficial.
  • Peppermint and Elderflower tea can be beneficial for a simple head cold.
  • Avoid mucus producing foods such as dairy products, meat and soya.
  • If symptoms are severe or persist seek professional help.

Homoeopathy can be very helpful in the treatment of the common health problems associated with the winter months. At such times you will produce a combination of symptoms that are unique to you. This is where homoeopathy comes into its own as the selection of the right homoeopathic medicine for you will take into account your individual experience of your illness. So if you are struggling don't hesitate to get in touch.