Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Remedies for the Common Cold


Hiding under a duvetI have a cold. And like anyone else cursed with the evil ailment, I can think about nothing else. So I might as well blog about it, because I have reached that stage of desperation, where I will try pretty much ANYTHING to be able to taste things again. To be able to speak like a normal person, who doesn't sound like they have their head jammed in a pumpkin. Most importantly, though, what I would really like, right now, more than anything else in the world, just for a little while at least, is to not look like Gollum. There is really nothing I don't want to complain about right now, and I am not alone. So, whether you have a cold yourself, or are tolerating a snuffling, moaning whingebag of your own, this post may just help you out!

Ah, Gollum, how I have missed you, gazing back at me from the mirror, through slitty, puffy eyes, with giant red nose and mouth half-open, like a semi-conscious neanderthal. Never again will I complain about my lot, beauty-wise. In future, I promise faithfully, whatever nature throws at me, I will gleefully settle for 'not Gollum'. Honest.

Gollum


So here are some of the remedies I have tried over the past few days, because I hate being ill. I am the worst, most impatient patient and I will try everything to win the Battle of the Soggy Tissue. It's a mission.

Chicken Soup. 

Since the world began, or since Grandmothers were young, which ever came first, chicken soup has been hailed as the cure-all of the culinary universe. I had always assumed this was very much psychological. A sort of placebo of warmth and goodness, wrapping your scratchy throat and ragged tonsils in a blanket of comfort. However, according to some boffins somewhere important, it has recently been shown that chicken soup does in fact have some, er, stuff in it, that actually boosts our flu-fighting immunity. So there you go, you can't argue with science.

Goose Fat

This one I haven't tried and you will understand why in about thirty seconds. Apparently, before the advent of antibiotics and sensible pharmacists, well-meaning parents would slather their unsuspecting off-spring in goose fat. This was liberally spread over the chest and back and then the ailing infants, I kid you not, were wrapped in brown paper. Yes, brown paper, like an oddly-shaped care package. Probably wise not to venture to close to the Post Office, I would imagine, but, eugh. Let's just not. 

Steam

Steam is my saviour. It is the unsung hero of my sinuses and, best of all, it is free. I am unsure of the scientific benefits of inhaling steam (no boffin news on this one, I'm afraid) and I strongly suspect that it is another remedy that is favoured for its warming, comforting effects, as much as its ability to loosen stubborn mucus. Whatever the reason, though, residing under a towel, over a bowl of recently boiled water, is the best way to spend cold-time. You can even add in some drops of eucalyptus oil, to give an even more tube-unblocking boost. There is also the possibility of receiving murmurs of sympathy from passers by as you languish under your towel and that's always nice. 

Echinacea

This is a herbal remedy and the jury is still out on the issue of placebo or protector, but I am on the side of protector. My family have a really annoying habit of bringing home the most disgusting, germ riddled, vile colds a few days before I have something important to do, like a job interview. Ensuring that I will be fully infected and totally Gollumified (it's a word) on the day in question. I have found that if I keep on lobbing Echinacea down my throat for the days leading up to the big event, I can keep myself snot-free, sometimes permanently. The cold will pass me by completely, much to the disgust of my nearest and dearest. The elixir seems a bit more effective than the tablets, but it looks like petrol and tastes pretty vile too, so it will depend on your level of desperation, whether you want to risk it. 

Vapour Rub... for the feet!

A weird one to finish, but this has been known to work. I don't know why though. I literally have no idea. It's not even particularly comforting. It feels disgusting, it smells worse... but, anyway, here goes. Before you go to bed, take a pot of vapour rub, apply the substance liberally to the soles of your feet, add a pair of warm, fluffy socks and retire to sleep. In the morning, you will hopefully find your symptoms significantly lessened, avoiding that cotton-wool stuffed, 'a hedgehog has died in my mouth', feeling you will normally wake up with during a cold. 


I hope you have enjoyed my semi-useful tips. Feel better soon! 

Hiding under Duvet

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40 comments

Louise said...

Awh poor you - having a cold is rubbish. I love hot lemon and honey - I don't know if it actually works but I just love the taste! Get well soon xx

Lucy Dorrington said...

I forgot that one! I may add it later. And thank you! x

angela hamilton said...

we use the vapour rub on the feet trick and it seems to really work well. I think I will leave the goose fat one though lol x

AngelEden said...

Having a cold is miserable :( Another vote for honey and lemon here too

Louisa said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Rebecca Smith said...

Vapour rub and chicken soup are my go to's! I remember using vapour rub often when I was a child :)

Sarah-Louise Bailey said...

**huggles** poor Lucy :( I hope you feel better soon, I'd bring you a flask full of tea / soup if I was nearby.

Laura Side Street said...

Argh colds are no fun - I always brew two bags of rooibos tea with fresh sliced ginger, two slices of lemon and manuka honey and make a tea from that - seems to help. Anyway sending get better vibes to you

Laura x

Stephanie Mamo said...

Hugest of huggles. I totally agree with chicken soup though, my Gran was of Jewish upbringing so chicken and matzo ball soup is something I always make at the slightest hint of a sniffle. It really does make you feel so much better. xxxxx

Kara Guppy said...

I have tried the vapour rub on the feet thing - it didn't work lol

Erica Price said...

Generally I manage to avoid the colds my hubby and son try to infect me with - I put that down to a fairly stress free life, good food and a reasonable amount of exercise. Once a year or so though (in fact right now) I come down with one - hate it.

jaime oliver said...

i dont think i would be trying some of these lol lol

EmmaT said...

Oh yes, Vicks on the feet is brilliant for stopping coughing during the night. Not sure it helps with the rest of the cold though. #myfavouritepost

lisa prince said...

ive always been a believer in the need for staying warm , plenty of fluids and rest and you will recover, as of yet i have not had one medication tablet or mixture cross my lips and i am finding i get over my illnesses although rare these days now alot quicker than they used to

Jen Walshaw said...

Chicken soup is a go to for us. Echenation gives you a day less cold according to my alternative therapy expert friend

Amy Squires (In My Bubble) said...

My mum always tells me to put vic on my feet but never really felt it helped. I just stock up on Lemsip and hope for the best! lol

Emma said...

I live on lemsips when I have a cold!

vickie morgan said...

We have put Vicks Vapor Rub under our nose, behind our ears, but never on our feet. Can't wait to try it but really I can if you know what I mean. thanks for the suggestions!

Globalmouse said...

I've been so lucky to have not had any colds this season...I LOVE Vicks Vapour rub though and swear by it!

Lucy Dorrington said...

It is so comforting, isn't it? I think it's partly the memories from childhood that make it such a necessity!

Lucy Dorrington said...

It feels really unnatural, lol, but it does seem to help!

Lucy Dorrington said...

Isn't it weird how Lemsips are so desirable when we're ill, but you wouldn't want one when you're well, if you see what I mean?!

Lucy Dorrington said...

I'm not sure if it helps either, if I'm honest. I mean, how would you know? There's no real way of measuring whether you would have been worse without it! I think I mainly do it out of desperation!

Lucy Dorrington said...

I have had colds where Echinacea just seemed to delay the inevitable, and other times I haven't got the cold at all, but I have no idea whether it was the herbal remedy or just immunity to that particular strain. More research is needed!

Lucy Dorrington said...

So many over the counter medications these days are just paracetamol and caffeine, it would be much cheaper to just have a normal paracetamol and a big cup of tea! I don't see how they can do much anyway!

Lucy Dorrington said...

It is so disgusting though it smells 'orrible, and it's so slimy, it's enough to put anyone off coughing!

Lucy Dorrington said...

You don't fancy a bit of goose fat, then? You could go out in the sun and you'd smell just like a roast potato!

Lucy Dorrington said...

Horrible, isn't it?! I don't get many, I think that's why I always seem to get the proper stinkers! Hope you are feeling better now!

Lucy Dorrington said...

That was a bit of an anticlimax then!

Lucy Dorrington said...

And it is such a good excuse, too! I always think I will make some chicken soup when I am well again, so I can taste it properly!

Lucy Dorrington said...

That sounds lovely! Shame you can't pop round with a thermos!

Lucy Dorrington said...

That would be nice, tea and sympathy is always welcome!

Lucy Dorrington said...

That's why they are so comforting, memories of childhood!

Lucy Dorrington said...

Thank you! Do you still love the smell? I'm sure I used to when I was little, but I'm not so keen now! :-P

Lucy Dorrington said...

I got desperate once,l as we didn't have any, so I made my own, it was even nicer!

Lucy Dorrington said...

Ha ha, can you imagine?! Those poor children must have stunk!

Ickle Pickle said...

Great post - I make my own natural sprays - one is to help with cold symptoms so we all use that. Thank you for linking up to #MyFavouritePost Kaz x

The Mini Mes and Me said...

Vapour rub in your feet works sooo well! Nothing beats a good bowl of soup either mm x

Zena's Suitcase said...

Some good old fashioned tips here! I always reach for a hot toddy when I'm suffering. Thanks for linking up with #myfavouritepost

Vickie Jackson said...

We (well me and the kids) use the vapour rub on the feet :) no idea why it works but it really seems to!
Hope you got well soon :) 💖

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