How to survive the cold and flu season

Here are 10 surprising tips to help ward off the winter bugs and save your business money!

If you would prefer to beat the dastardly lurgy without too many drugs or antibiotics, there are ways you can feel better using natural therapies and good old-fashioned food when you are feeling under the weather.

  1. Go crazy with ginger
    Grate it in a cup of hot water, squeeze half a lemon and a teaspoon of honey and you’ve got yourself a soothing drink to help with sore throats that will beat Lemsips any day of the week. Honey has natural anti-bacterial properties and will soothe the throat) while ginger is one of nature’s ninjas, helping ease congestion, is an anti-inflammatory and kills bad anti-bodies.

    2. Salt gargle
    For sore throats, gargle your throat with warm water and salt. Himalayan pink rock salt is preferable… but normal salt works just as well.

  2. Keep your fluids up
    Drink water – room temperature or warm is best – and plenty of it! Imagine your body is a dirty water bottle with lots of germs inside, it needs a good rinse out. Squeeze lemon into as much of the water as you can and benefit from its many properties…here are just a few.

    4. Lemons boost your immune system
    They balance acidity in your body, by alkalising it. Lemon is acidic, true, Inside the body however, when lemon juice has been fully metabolized and its minerals are dissociated in the bloodstream, its effect is alkalizing and therefore raises the pH of body tissue (pH above 7 is alkaline).

    If you are sick then you are probably highly acidic and need a good balancing act!

    Lemons are a natural anti-septic (germ killers). They promote healing through high doses of Ascorbic acid and vitamin C.

    5. Get steamy
    If you have congestion on your chest, have a steamy bath with some Vicks Vapourub and drink warm water with lemon, as this helps loosen the congestion.

    6. Green and clean
    Eat as many greens as possible. If you can’t make it to the supermarket, grab some green juice instead. Or try taking greens powder in water.

    7. Chicken soup
    Make some chicken soup from organic chicken bones, or beef bone broth with apple cider vinegar and lots of veggies. The healing properties in homemade bone broth are excellent for speeding up healing and recuperation from illness.

    8. Take the day off
    If you are feeling genuinely unwell, don’t go into work and infect your fellow co-workers (especially if you are coughing and sneezing germs everywhere)!

    Presenteeism (going into work when you are ill or not fit to work) costs Australian businesses 5 times more than absenteeism. This is due to levels of productivity being down and spreading illness and infection. It is estimated that presenteeism cost the Australian economy $34.1 billion in 2010 alone.

    9. Rest up
    Find a great TV series to binge watch, grab the Kleenex and give your body the rest it obviously needs to get better.

    10. See a Doctor
    Please don’t use these humble cold tips to treat any serious illness. Antibiotics are completely necessary in many cases and your GP will be the best person to advise you on this. Find a GP or a medical practice you trust. Having a family doctor or a doctor who knows your history and medical background and you feel comfortable with is invaluable.

    Source: This is an edited extract from ‘’How to survive the cold and flu season”, available from AFA Care and Benestar at For more information about accessing AFA Care resources available at Benestar please visit