Colds And Flu

Colds and flu are the most common cause of illness in adults and children. Most colds are caused by a viral infection – there are more than 200 viruses capable of causing a cold. The flu (influenza) is always caused by a virus. There are three types of flu virus – A, B and C.

Symptoms of a cold

The symptoms vary from person to person and from illness to illness. Symptoms may last a few days or over a week. The most common symptoms of a cold are:

  • sore throat
  • runny or blocked nose
  • sneezing
  • swollen lymph glands
  • red, sore eyes
  • cough
  • headache
  • fever (this is not always present)
  • loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting are sometimes present

Symptoms of the flu

Symptoms develop from one to three days after becoming infected. The symptoms usually come on abruptly. The most common symptoms include:
  • headache
  • flushed face
  • muscle and bone aches and pains
  • sore throat
  • malaise and weakness
  • fever, sweating and chills
  • cough

How do you know if it’s a cold or flu?

They are often confused. These are some distinguishing features:
  • The flu can last up to a week, whereas a cold may only last a couple of days.
  • The flu often begins abruptly, whereas the symptoms of a cold can come on gradually.
  • The flu usually causes a high fever, whereas a cold causes a mild fever or no fever at all.
  • The flu causes muscular pains and shivering and a cold does not.
  • Colds cause a runny nose; the flu often causes a dry feeling in the nose and throat.
  • Most people get one or more colds each year but only get the flu every few years.

Although colds and flu are viral infections, because they weaken your immune system you are susceptible to developing a secondary bacterial infection of your respiratory tract. This will increase the duration of the illness.

Conventional medical treatment

There is no cure for a cold; treatment is aimed at making the patient more comfortable, resting and relieving symptoms. Treatment usually involves the following:
  • Drinking plenty of fluids.
  • Bed rest if a fever is present.
  • Paracetamol can be taken to reduce a fever and alleviate symptoms such as headache and body aches.
You should consult your doctor if you have difficulty breathing, a persistent cough, a persistent fever or a severe headache.

General recommendations

  • Rest is essential, ideally in bed to allow your immune system to overcome the infection.
  • Try to remove yourself from stressful situations as much as possible. Stress suppresses your immune system.
  • Drink plenty of pure water, raw vegetable juices and water with fresh lemon or lime juice squeezed into it. Staying hydrated is vitally important when you have a fever. Drinking two litres or more of fluid will help you bring up phlegm from your lungs more easily.
  • Avoid sugar entirely and greatly reduce your intake of high carbohydrate foods like bread, rice and pasta. Sugar suppresses your immune system and eating a lot of it will prolong the illness.
  • Avoid all dairy products as they will increase congestion and mucus production.
  • Many herbs, spices and foods have anti viral properties. Include as many of these as possible in your diet. Some of these include garlic, onion, mushrooms, cabbage, fresh coconut, thyme and walnuts.

Recommended books

Recommended supplements for colds and flu

  • Selenomune
    Take one capsule daily. Capsules combining selenium, vitamin E, zinc, vitamin C and other nutrients will help to strengthen the immune system. All of these nutrients have anti viral effects and can inhibit the replication of viruses in your body.
  • Cold Eze
    Herbs Echinacea, garlic, elderberry, cayenne, gingerroot combined with Vitamin C and antioxidants and zinc. Cold-eze formula is an immune booster and can be taken as a preventative in the winter season or if you are coming down with frequent infections.

The above statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease.


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