Ironically enough, I came down with a terrible head cold the week I launched my health coaching business! I didn't let it get my spirits down though. I'm meant to help people feel their best, so I was determined to get myself feeling better with a few of my go-to food remedies. What does a health coach eat when plagued with sinus headaches, sore throat, and fatigue? Well, "fluids and rest" was my theme for the week and I'm about to share my tricks with you in case you're finding yourself in a similarly sick situation.
Peppermint green tea--Hot tea loosens up congestion and peppermint soothes the throat. I love going with a peppermint green tea because while I don't always feel like having my morning coffee on a sick day, I do appreciate a little caffeine boost to clear up the fog. Did you know that part of the reason we feel foggy when we're sick is because less oxygen is getting to our brains? In that case, I'll take all the natural focus help I can get.
Raw honey and apple cider vinegar--These two ingredients both have natural anti-bacterial qualities, so they're great to ingest when you feel a cold coming on, or to take down an existing sinus infection. Lots of people make a tonic with these ingredients mixed into warm water, but I find it pretty repulsive to drink when too concentrated. Instead, I dilute 1 Tablespoon of ACV in a cup of cold water. I'll eat a teaspoon of raw honey straight, letting it coat my throat, then follow with the diluted beverage. It may not be the most familiar experience, but it does the job!
Tomato soup--This has long been my go-to comfort food and for good reason. Tomatoes are high in vitamin C, which is what our bodies need to boost immunity and get over illnesses more quickly. I prefer to make my own so the nutrients are still fresh and dense, but if canned is all that's available, just look for a tomato soup with minimal ingredients.
Fruit juice popsicles--nothing soothes a sore throat like a cold popsicle...but most are loaded with added sugar and food dyes. I like to pour 100% juice into a small cup, throw in a plastic spoon, and freeze that puppy for a few hours. Voila! You've got yourself an all natural popsicle to help your throat feel better and satisfy any craving for sweetness you may be feeling.
Whole wheat bread--I don't know about you, but when I'm heaping on the fluids in an attempt to heal quickly, my stomach sometimes gets to feeling a little imbalanced. My body needs a little bit of a bland carb to help me digest all the extra fluids I'm feeding it. As per my usual diet, I choose a whole wheat bread with butter, but you can do any whole grain that sounds appealing to you: brown rice, organic corn tortilla, or even whole grain crackers.
Of course it can be tempting to eat junkier comfort food when sick and I certainly gave myself permission to indulge a couple of times, but I would encourage you to listen to what your body is craving for healing, not what your mind is craving for comfort. It's a tough discipline and there's always grace to veer off your regular dieting habits when sick, but overall, fueling your body with the nutrients it needs will get you feeling back to normal sooner! Here's to a healthier allergy season for all of us!