Updated 29 July 2015

Cold and flu rescue plan

This year's cold and flu season seems to be particularly bad and many of our users have commented on our Colds and Flu Expert Q&A page that symptoms just don't want to go away. 

Here are some top tips from nutrition guru Patrick Holford on natural supplements that may give you a leg up:

  • 1 000mg vitamin C every hour (ideally one with zinc and berry extracts). Why? Keep drip-feeding enough vitamin C into your bloodstream to keep the level consistently high.
  • 10 drops of echinacea every 2 hours. Why? It contains special kinds of polysaccharides, such as inulin, which increase macrophage production, which are the immune cells that destroy bugs.
  • 1 teaspoon, or equivalent, of black elderberry extract every 2 hours. Why? Viruses get into body cells by puncturing their walls with tiny spikes made of a substance called haemagglutinin and an extract of elderberry disarms these spikes.
  • 1 x high-potency multivitamin–mineral with 15 mcg of vitamin D and 10mg zinc. Why? Zinc has been shown to make the body’s T cells much more effective, hence boosting immunity.
  • 1 x 1 000iu (25mcg) vitamin D a day during the winter (for immune protection rather than immediate effect). Why? If you rarely go outside, exposing your skin to direct sunlight, your body won’t make any vitamin D, which is vital for immune function.

While you're being all good to yourself, make your own cold and flu shot with all-natural ingredients.

Get better soon!


Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

Healthy gut »

IBS – 4 symptoms that extend beyond your stomach

When you think of IBS, symptoms that come to mind include diarrhoea, constipation and gas. However, there are other symptoms that extend beyond your stomach.

Sex health »

Do you feel sad after sex? This is why and what you can do about it

A new study published in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy has revealed that 41% of the men surveyed had felt sad after sex in the previous four weeks.