Why do we do Coughs, Colds & Flu?
Autumn & Winter is the season for most coughs, colds, Flu & respiratory illnesses. I regularly get asked to suggest Homeopathic remedies to support my Clients & Home Prescribers through these, so I thought it would be helpful to put most of it in a Blog post for future use.
Firstly let’s consider why this is the season for these types of illnesses in some of us. It’s common to just blame the cold, but actually many pathogens find it more difficult to survive in colder conditions than in warmth. My perspective is that there are several reasons that combine to create this type of illness (& we won’t get into what ‘illness’ actually is!!) :-
- We have just come out of Summer when we have made the most of the long days & warm weather – we-ve been more active, socialised more, Slept less & eaten lighter foods. Often we try to keep going at a similar pace rather than slowing down, changing our diets, sleeping more & conserving energy. We do need to reflect what the rest of the Natural world is doing in preparation for all the adaptations needed for very different external conditions. When we don’t our physical selves remind us that we need to. There’s nothing like a heavy cold to remind us to take care of ourselves, take supplements, eat more nourishing foods, drink more water, rest more & keep warm.
- In order to conserve our energy & be able to adapt to the colder, darker months many internal changes happen & just like the trees we shed what may be slowing us down or taking too much energy to manage. In short we have a good old house cleaning which often includes using all or some of our routes of elimination (Stools, Urine, Sweat, Mucus). When our energy is already low, this process is seldom elegant or comfortable, but always remember Better out than In!
- Susceptibility – When we are already someone with a tendency or pattern or doing mucousy type illnesses, (usually when the bowels/gut are not efficient), there will be lots of mucous produced. Every part of our bodies have mucous membranes but the nose & respiratory tracts are the most exposed to external contaminants & therefore producing mucus helps to carry these out of us. Of course when we are unable to process or house clean efficiently & quickly then this mucous gets infected & changes to yellow or green, gets thicker & bungs up the passages. Our bodies then do the Inflammation process in an attempt to get on top of this infection – so fevers or localised redness or swelling follows. If our more vulnerable area is more gut based then we may experience nausea, vomiting or bowel changes as part of a Flu.
- Community Behaviours – Ever since Celtic times (& probably before), October has been the end & start of the Year – we go into the dark to be re-birthed in Spring. So now instead of slowing down & conserving energy, we ask our children & young adults to start formal education years – often starting early, interrupting natural sleep patterns & days are long & much demanded of them both socially & academically. Parents too are asked to get back into rushing around taking kids to schools/child minders/social commitments as well as doing whatever jobs or responsibilities they have. It’s tiring, often overwhelming & does not support us to adapt seamlessly to the demands of Winter. This makes us more vulnerable to poor management of external opportunist invaders.
- Feeling Shame around prolonged illness or ‘taking time off’ ie resting. Resting & re-charging is often associated with something we are only entitled to when we have achieved something or done everything. Often unwittingly set up in our childhoods when parents are trying to teach responsibility or productivity – resting/playing is often used as motivation for completing a task or finishing something. Pacing ourselves is a key part of staying out of stress & what is right for us is unique to us, being forced to perform or operate at a rate that takes more from us than it gives is what creates stress in our bodies & in our whole selves. Society encourages all of us to ‘Carry On’ ‘Don’t let a cold/cough/flu interrupt your day’. Recognising when the pace isn’t suiting us is a key component of self-care & personal development. Building daily, weekly & monthly periods of Rest, recuperation & re-charging creates more productivity not less!
- Lack of Basic Nutrients/Fuel – Ideally this should come from our Food & as I said earlier, we need different ‘Fuel’, different resources for the colder, darker, wetter months AND when we are asked to navigate new or different situations, people or tasks. Marathon runners know that they have to train & eat more slow burning, nutritious foods in order to have the stamina to keep going without lasting damage. Often children are going all morning or longer with nothing but a bowl of processed grains, sugar & milk (more sugar). They often eat poorly generally & are basically running on poor quality fuel that cannot sustain them through all the changes & demands being made of them. Again this makes them more vulnerable to illness. This applies to many adults too by the way.
- Collective Energy – As we are all too aware, we have just immerged from a time of unprecedented collective fear, anxiety, restrictions, censorship, experimentation, medical tyranny & trauma during the recent “Pandemic” & the threat of it returning resides in many of us. We are also experiencing terrible Genocide & War in the middle east as well as the ever looming threat of environmental disaster. This with rising costs & a lack of meaningful support for the increasing numbers of us that are either ill physically or emotionally takes it’s toll on all of us. It is not coincidence that the numbers of people with coughs, colds or Flu seems higher than ever. We are part of the collective & we feel what others are feeling. It is more imperative than ever that we do our own personal development work & become conscious of how we can change the collective energy by doing so.
The great thing about understanding all of these factors is that we are actually totally in control of our own Health, we are not randomly targeted by evil pathogens! When we do whatever we can to support our physical, emotional & spiritual Health, we are far less likely to fall into regular patterns of illness. I’m not saying we can avoid doing a ‘House Cleanse’ of some sort occasionally nor am I ignoring that with the best will in the world we can become depleted & therefore need to stop & rest. But how we choose to lead our lives, put in or on our bodies makes a difference!
I just want to finish on asking what you do when you or your family experience typical Heavy cold or Flu type symptoms?
My own choices start with taking the indicated Homeopathic remedy, dose up with Vitamin C, Zinc, perhaps Echinacea, plenty of hot drinks, keep warm, go to bed & sleep as much as I can, Lately I would now also run a Healy Frequency Device Programme on myself. Obviously I would cancel any social or work commitments thereby minimising contact with people.
I understand that some of you may reach for Lemsip, cough syrups. throat lozenges, paracetemol & a thermometer but would also probably take to the bed, keep warm & cancel stuff?
What do you do differently when you chose to do a test & get a name for your Flu/cold/cough? What is the value to you in terms of how you would choose to support yourself through any cough, cold, sore throat or Flu?
In Part 2 of this Blog I go into my short list of possible Homeopathic Remedies for Coughs/Colds & Flu as well as some other Natural Health tips to support us taking responsibility for our own recovery to Health.