As the warming air temperature may not signify the start of winter, it is still a good time to strengthen immunity and prepare for the upcoming cold and flu season. Dr. Ivica Cvetković, a family medicine doctor, and Maja Žalac, a phytoaromatherapist, suggest that while it may not be possible to completely avoid these illnesses, taking proactive measures can contribute to a quicker recovery should you fall ill. They also advise differentiating between cold, flu, and corona virus symptoms as each illness can have varying complications.
According to Dr. Cvetković, cold symptoms usually appear gradually and include a sore throat followed by a runny nose, watery eyes, sneezing, and a dry and unproductive cough. To alleviate these symptoms he recommends rest, tea with honey or ginger, a light diet rich in vitamins like zinc and vitamin C to support the immune system as well as nasal drops for congestion. On the other hand flu symptoms appear suddenly starting with fever followed by muscle pain headache and dry cough. Symptoms may last up to ten days while full recovery can take up to three weeks. Complications of flu include bronchitis ear infections pneumonia and severe complications for people with weak immunity making it potentially fatal.
Dr. Cvetković emphasizes the importance of eating a diet rich in antioxidants like vitamin A C E zinc beta-carotene selenium as well as consuming natural remedies such as elderberry rosehip herbs to boost immunity during this season. Similarly Maja Žalac suggests using essential oils such as ravensara eucalyptus for chest rubs or chest inhalers in case of respiratory issues