By PharmDr. Margit Slimáková
A change in season always brings along with it basic infections such as colds, runny nose, cough, intestinal flu, inflammation of the ears or chickenpox . When we are ill, our body goes through a period of increased immune system activity to manage the infection. The length and severity of the disease depends, particularly, on the state of health of the person.
Why natural therapies?
Medications, for example antibiotics administered in bacterial infections, usually effectively destroy the micro-organisms to resolve the infection. But many times, the antibiotic often infects benign microorganisms of the body, resulting in an imbalance in the intestinal environment. Antibiotic therapy can also lead to the emergence of repeated infections. In the case of minor illnesses, I recommend natural therapies.
During infections it is also very worthwhile to respect the tastes (or rather the cravings) of the sick. A really sick child and an adult who hurts in the throat, coughs, has a temperature, sometimes need not eat much, but it is important to give the body rest to fight the disease.
If a very young child is not affected, or if serious illnesses do not last for more than three days, I recommend that the defense be left to the body’s own strength.
Rest is essential, but it does not necessarily mean utter inactivity or lying in bed. Resting in bed is good only when the affected person feels that he or she needs it. Otherwise, even a light walk outdoors is good.
If the problem persists, in addition to consulting a doctor, its good to consult the medical condition with an expert on natural therapies as well.
The only thing that is necessary in the nutrition of the patient is the adequate intake of fluids, especially in the case of fever, vomiting or very small children.
Staying a few days on minimum diet does not pose any problems for the body.
The most suitable thing you can try to offer to the sick are vegetable soups. Chicken broth (of good quality meat) is also suitable, especially in the case of exhaustion and chilling. You can also offer apple compote (home-made and without sugar), grated apples and carrots, rice or millet porridge, prepared with almond or rice milk.
Serving cow’s milk is not advised, because of the risk of phlegm. Fried foods are best avoided.
From the natural Therapies I recommend phytotherapy (herbal teas, poultices or oils), homeopathy or traditional Chinese medicine.
As a dietitian I also recommend vitamin C in the form of lemon juice in tea with honey, Echinacea and probiotics.
Important: I have prepared these recommendations based on my years of experience and professional studies. They are designed to for the treatment of non-serious or minor problems. Their application can help to treat the problems, alleviate the course of the disease, or at least reduce concomitant manifestations of the disease. For serious problems I always recommend consulting a doctor.
Margit is a specialist in health prevention and nutrition. She graduated in pharmacies and dietetics, and uses proven knowledge from all areas of medicine. She has worked extensively in Germany, China, France and the USA. She deals mainly with counseling and education. She is a mother to 3 children and lives with her family in Prague.