Playing Doctor

Lately it seems like everyone I know (including myself) has some sort of weird cold happening. I’ve stocked up on tissues (the ones with lotion-are there any other kind?), cold medicine, and have been craving soup for the past week. While I do believe that sometimes you just have to let a cold run its course, there are a few things I have been doing to fight back. In honor of cold and flu season, I decided to drop some tips for all of my Sicky Vickies out there! 

Vitamin C

This is an obvious one, I know. However, what isn’t so obvious to some people is that there are other sources besides orange juice without all the added sugar. Cranberry juice (100%, NOT cocktail juice) contains 100% of your daily value of Vitamin C in 8 fluid ounces and it’s super price-friendly. Other great sources include pineapple juice, citrus fruits, and veggies like broccoli, brussel sprouts, red and green peppers!

Variety Of Fruits


Something that not many people know is that Zinc is an extremely important player in helping the immune system fight off bacteria and viruses. While oysters are a huge source of Zinc, some more practical sources are dark meats, crab, fortified breakfast cereals, and baked beans. While no food is bad food, animal sources of Zinc are more bioavailable (more easily absorbed and used by the body) than plant and grain sources. 


Hydrate or die-drate, people. While obviously drinking water is important any day of the year, it’s especially important when sick. First, being hydrated helps water-soluble vitamins and minerals (like Vitamin C and Zinc- it all comes full circle) be used by the body. Also, staying hydrated helps the kidneys do their job of filtering waste from the body. It’s important to not over-consume caffeine when you’re sick since drinks like coffee lead to more bathroom trips, which leads to quicker dehydration. The takeaway? Keep a refillable water bottle with you for easy and accessible hydration. 

Just in time for cold and

Physical Activity

While I’m not an expert on exercise, what I do know about working out when you’re sick is broken down simply: If your symptoms are above the neck (stuffy nose, drainage, a sore throat) you can technically go to the gym and take it easy as long as you don’t have a fever. For example, yesterday I walked on the treadmill while watching The Bachelor (Peter really isn’t killing it), then did a few light arm machines, stretched, and called it good. Today, my symptoms are at my chest and below (stomach ache, coughing, wheezing, etc..) so I’m sitting here typing to you lovely people instead. Keep in mind that you can totally choose to skip the gym overall if you’re feeling sick, because rest is the fastest way to restoring good health.

Photography of Blue Ceramic Coffee Cup

I’m no doctor. Right now I’m just a sick girl who’s about to watch The Office in bed with a box of tissues and some tea. However, studying nutrition has taught me a thing or two about taking care of my body, and I hope these tips will help you all do the same. 

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