Staying Healthy When Everyone Around You is Sick

Though I successfully managed to stave off the nasty cold my husband had for almost a week, Mademoiselle was not so lucky. Fortunately, this is the second cold and the first severe illness Mademoiselle has ever had in her entire 27 months of life in this world. Typically, when my children are sick I immediately quarantine and confine them to their rooms. I put them on lockdown. They are not allowed to leave their rooms for anything except in the case of a fire and to use the restroom. For days, I walk around with a can of Lysol and a bottle of bleach in hopes of keeping contagious germs at bay. I go through this ritual because I cannot afford to be sick and I wish to keep others in my household healthy as well.

While it is easy to quarantine a fifteen and a nine-year-old, quarantining an affectionate, headstrong two-year-old who thinks she’s grown is no easy feat. By allowing Mademoiselle to run freely about the house she puts us all at risk of getting sick, especially so since she does not yet understand the concept of covering her mouth when she coughs and she loves to hug and give kisses on the lips. Now that the hubby is in bed recovering from knee surgery, I must be vigilant in protecting myself from sickness.

To keep from getting sick, I have been eating lots of flu and cold fighting foods. The natural compounds found in foods like garlic, onions, honey, ginger, and the spicy cayenne pepper provide natural immune boosting properties. And so yesterday, I added cayenne pepper, a clove of raw garlic, and half of an onion chopped to a bowl of lentil and spinach soup. Keep in mind that garlic should be consumed raw and chopped for maximum benefit; red onions are recommended over yellow. I also have been making tea with boiling water, two tablespoons of grated ginger, juice from a lemon, and honey. I cannot forget about Rachel’s delicious and nutritious yogurt because of the probiotics (friendly bacteria), which is also good at fighting against colds and flu. This morning, after I drop the boys off at school, I will be going to Whole Foods Market to get some Echinacea and zinc to add to my arsenal of natural cold busting weapons.