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  1. #1
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    Preventing Colds?

    Does anyone have any experience with cold remedies? At work, everyone here is obsessed with Emergen-C and grapefruit seed extract (GSE). I've tried both, and I'm not really sure if they do anything at all. I guess it's cold season again, because a few people are sniffling, the bottle of GSE is out on the counter, and we're nearly out of Emergen-C packets. Are any of you believers? Any downsides we don't know about? Anything else you recommend? Thanks!

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  3. #2
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    Usually, by the time I realize I've got a cold and not just allergies, my cold is almost over already! So I've never really bothered w/ the various remedies.

  4. #3
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    I get an instant headache from Emergen-C. It is really weird, but for awhile I was trying to take it daily in cold season and got a headache- bam! the minute I drank it. A shame because it is yummy.

    I think that fizzy Airborne stuff actually works, though, and despite having nasty sucralose in it, doesn't make me feel sick.

    Also the usual things, which take more effort but definitely work-- sleep enough at night, get exercise at least 4 days a week, drink a lot of water, and wash your hands a lot. When I am taking good care of myself I don't get sick.

  5. #4
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    I try to drink a lot of water all the time (and when you're sick it's even better because it thins all the crap out that's in your nose). And I wash my hands. I have a bad habit of biting my nails or at least chewing on them, so I have to wash my hands a lot when I'm out.

    I don't take anything to prevent colds though, I haven't noticed what Airborne has in it.

    BUT when I do get a cold I've found that Zicam really, really works. It's basically zinc. But last week I got a cold, tried a Claritin and it didn't do anything, so I started taking Zicam, it only lasted maybe two days. Colds used to last at least a week for me.

    I mostly find out about stuff and what it has in it at work since I stock the drug dept at a grocery store. We don't carry Emergen-C, so I don't know what all it has in it, but if you get a headache from it, try just taking vitamin C another way. (A sign of overdose is a headache, so if you already get a lot of Vit C maybe that's why you got one when you took emergen-c?)

    I looked it up a little online, and Airborne has the same amt of Vit C, and has zinc (there isn't any in emergen-c that I saw). And has more Vit E that improves the immune system

  6. #5
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    here's a good thing I found about zinc. tells you how much to take when you have a cold and to prevent a cold.
    --------
    Taking lozenges made of zinc gluconate can help shorten the length of a cold. Most forms of zinc work equally well, but if you're trying to prevent a cold, use zinc lozenges or a zinc spray made of zinc gluconate. Take 15 mg of zinc daily (the amount in most multivitamins). Because zinc can block copper absorption, make sure that your supplement also contains 1 to 2 mg of copper.

    To fight colds, use a zinc nasal spray four times a day or suck on zinc lozenges that contain 15 to 25 mg of zinc gluconate every two to four hours as soon as you notice symptoms. Stop when symptoms subside. Consuming zinc on an empty stomach can cause nausea, so take zinc supplements with food.

    it's from http://www.vitamins-nutrition.org/vitamins/zinc.html

  7. #6
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    The way I understood it was that zinc was good once you had a cold, but it wasn't necessarily a preventative. My doctor said only to take Cold-Eeze name brand for zinc because it had some special more absorbant kind of zinc. But one time I took too many in one day and got very nauseous, so now I'm not really a fan.

  8. #7
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    Really, the best way to prevent colds is prevent yourself from getting the virus in the first place. I.e., wash your hands often, and don't tough your face, mouth, eyes, nose, etc with your hands (or only with super clean hands).

    It helps if if you carry hand sanitizer. ;)

    del

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by delqc
    Really, the best way to prevent colds is prevent yourself from getting the virus in the first place. I.e., wash your hands often, and don't tough your face, mouth, eyes, nose, etc with your hands (or only with super clean hands).

    It helps if if you carry hand sanitizer. ;)

    del
    That's my idea, too. If you work in an office, the worst culprit is the phone. I used to lysol everything when I worked in close quarters in an office because no one respected my stuff and we were passing around cold after cold after cold. Everything that comes in contact with hands or mouths - keyboards, mouses, doorknobs, toilet handles, etc. I even kept my own pen in my pocket so no one would touch it.

    FYI - my paranoia comes from not being able to take antihistimines, decongestants, suppressants, etc. because they make me jittery and unfocused, not to mention breastfeeding doesn't allow it. Therefore, I absolutely hate being sick because all I do is suffer. I managed to catch only one minor bought of sickness in the past year by washing and disinfecting.

  10. #9
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    I stopped teaching Kindergarten and now I'm with 8th graders. That's the best prevention I know about, getting away from snotty-nosed kids who don't understand tissues.

    Not that I'm terribly optimistic about 8th grade hygiene either... sigh.

  11. #10
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    Your body can only absorb so much vitamin C and then you pee the rest out (or worse, you will get diarrhea) - hence mega doses aren't any better than your normal multivitamin.

    This is a good article from the New York Times on "airborne," "emergen-c," zinc and echinacea:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/01/he...69c981&ei=5070


 
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