Try our tip tips for staying fit and well through autumn and beyond.
Get a healthy dose of D
Vitamin D is essential for strong immunity. It’s particularly powerful at preventing upper respiratory tract infections including rhinitis, tonsillitis and laryngitis. Sunlight is the best way for your body to make this vitamin, but with winter sun too weak from October onwards, top up with vitamin D-rich foods such as oily fish, mushrooms and eggs. Or try a supplement, such as BetterYou DLux 3000 vitamin D oral spray, (£7.99, hollandand barrett.com).
Wrap up warm
Feeling the chill? Staying warm could increase your chances of catching the common cold. A 2017 study by researchers at Mahidol University in Thailand found that chilled immune cells are less effective at fighting infection. However, simply cranking the central heating up high can dry out your skin, cause a scratchy throat and even promote the spread of germs. Instead, light a fire and layer up with cosy cardigans and blankets, and always wrap up warm when out and about.
Cook up chicken soup
This sickness staple isn’t just an old wives’ tale. ‘A hearty bowl of chicken and vegetable soup can slow the speed at which neutrophils move around your body,’ says nutritional therapist and health coach Ailsa Hichens (foodfabulous.co.uk). ‘Neutrophils are a type of white blood cell that protect your body from infection. When they move slowly, they’re able to become more concentrated in areas that need them most, helping to fight infection.’
Tip: Boil some bones and root veg for a few hours, simmering gently, then strain and have it for your main meal or sip throughout the day.
Get online health support
An app might not be able to cure the common cold, but it can offer you some support. Home Remedies Plus (free on the Apple App Store) is a complete guide to creating remedies using common kitchen cupboard ingredients. Simply input your symptoms and the app will give you suggestions.
Try a herbal hero
CBD oil may help with cold and flu symptoms. It’s thought the cannabinoids and terpenes help reduce inflammation in your nose, throat and lungs. Try 100 per cent natural The Tonic CBD Oil Capsules (39.99, greengoddesswellness.com).