It’s that time of year! Yes, the holidays . . . but also cold and flu season! So how can you best ward off colds and the flu in your household – especially when you have guests coming into town? Keep reading to find out!Cold Symptoms
A cold is actually the method your immune system uses to fight off viral invasion. Symptoms are usually characterized by a dry, scratchy throat, sneezing and a runny nose; although some people also experience a very sore throat, cough, mild fever, and a headache as well.
Currently there are more than 200 different viruses they can cause this problem, and any number of these viruses can infect your body up to two or three days before you actually feel any of the cold symptoms. Once present, the symptoms can last as long as 14 days.
Experts in traditional Eastern medicine believe that colds occur when moist energy enters the body through specific acupressure points on the back of the neck. By performing certain acupressure activities and a few yoga exercises, you can minimize the symptoms
and you may even get your cold to go away faster.Acupressure for Cold and Flu Prevention
Reach behind your neck and apply pressure to the area where your spine is located. Press the area inward using your thumbs, fingers and palms. Repeat the pressure method for three to five minutes.Poong-mun
This acupressure method can also relieve some of the pain and discomfort of the cold systems. Place fingers on either side of the thoracic vertebrae. Press inward with your fingers and palms again for a few minutes.Dae-chu
Locate the 7th cervical vertebrae by bending your head forward and feeling for the biggest bone on your neck. This is the place where your shoulders meet. Put your fingers under this bone and hold your head in an upright position. It’s easier to find the position once your head is upright. Continually tap this point with a cupped hand for a minute or two.
Place your middle fingers in the hollow areas below the protrusions of your collarbone just outside your upper breastbone. Press this point with your thumbs for three to five minutes.
If you’re a little overwhelmed by performing these pressure moves yourself, have a friend or family member help you. Or, invest in an acupressure mat
.Yoga for Cold and Flu Prevention
The following are a few yoga poses
, which when combined with the acupressure techniques, can considerably relieve cold symptoms such as aches and pains. Mountain Yoga Pose
Performing the Mountain yoga pose allows you to enjoy the experience of being still. It gives you a type of relaxed power. Stand with your feet at a distance and evenly distribute your weight on all sides of your feet. Keep your arms and hands straight at your side. Gradually distribute your weight to the outside balls of your feet. Feel what the change is like. Change the balance of your body from the even distribution to the outer and inner balls of your feet every few seconds. Tense your thigh muscles as you change back and forth. Inhale and exhale deeply while performing the exercise.Sun Salutation
Stand with your feet at hip distance on the floor and your arms to the sides. Inhale deeply, and as you’re inhaling gradually lift your arms above your head until they meet. Stretch as if you are stretching towards the sun. Gradually exhale slowly lowering your arms to your sides again. Do this exercise several times until you are fully relaxed.
The traditional Yoga lotus pose used for meditation is a great way to get your mind off of your aching body. Place your left foot over your right thigh, and your right foot over your left thigh. Sit straight up and inhale and exhale deeply. Close your eyes and concentrate on your deep breathing.
While the above exercises may not get rid of cold symptoms entirely, they will help relieve some of the aches and pains, sinus pressure and other typical cold symptoms. By performing them you will feel relaxed and more energized throughout the day. Obviously, having a cold is not fun. But you will feel less irritable and achy if you do these exercises in the early morning and again in the evening.