How is the cold/flu season going in your house?
Over here we’ve been rotating colds since school/nursery school started.
For me, this means this weekend I’m dealing with a sinus headache.
How I deal with sinus headaches may be different than most conventional approaches.
I choose not to take over the counter medications for pain as my first approach to managing it.
Why? Because they are temporary fixes that don’t address the cause of my pain and they have side effects that I don’t like for my body.
-> NSAIDS - like Advil - impact our gut lining and microbiome.
I know how tightly linked my gut and brain are so I do everything I can to protect my intestinal health.
-> Acetaminophen - Tylenol - impacts our body’s natural detoxification pathways.
I’ve worked very intentionally to support my body’s natural detox systems, especially while I was coming out of a state of depletion.
Do I sometimes take them? Yes. But I always start with other strategies first.
Here’s what I usually go to first with a sinus headache or cold:
Here’s why: Ginger is a simple ‘plant medicine’ that I can easily find in the grocery store. I usually juice up a big batch of it and freeze it in ice cube trays for convenience. I put about ½ a tablespoon in a mug of hot water with a squeeze of lemon.
Ginger is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. It doesn’t harm the gut but actually improves digestion and relieves digestive symptoms including gas and bloating. Ginger is a natural pain reducer which I find effective for headaches, colds, coughs and general aches and pains.
Saline nasal rinse
Here’s why: nasal rinses use a simple saline solution which helps to thin, loosened and clear away mucus inside the nasal passages. This helps to reduce congestion.
Neti pot, squeeze bottles, pressurized sprays…they all work the same way. Not always pleasant...but it's effective!
My grandmother always used to tell me this - “drink lots of fluids to help ‘flush out your cold’”.
While this isn’t actually how it works…it’s still a good visual!
Hydration is really important for normal body functions but ESPECIALLY when we’re sick. Having proper hydration helps the body circulate blood freely, getting immune cells to where they need to go.
Plus your brain actually shrinks a bit in size when you're dehydrated - which is sometimes a cause of headaches. It’s always a good sign from my body that I need to drink more fluids!
I’ve got ginger tea down the hatch already, a pot of tea steeping and I’m off to go rinse my sinuses!
Wishing you health and vibrancy for you and your household this winter!
With love and warmth,
Your dietitian doula
P.S. - Are you feeling exhausted constantly and frustrated with being sick frequently?
These are signs that you may be depleted and your body needs support.
I work with moms who want to deeply support their body in coming out of a state of depletion so they can have energy and truly enjoy life.
Want to learn more about how I work? Explore my offers on my website.
Send me a message and we can talk about what's going on for you.