Winter Health Hacks

It’s imminent that at some point between December and February, you will become ill. There’s some bad man-flu’s going round at the minute, one of which I have, so whilst I’m in bed getting through a box of tissues, I thought I’d share some tips on how to get over your cold a little faster, rather than have it lingering, and help you go about your daily life as normal as possible.

I’d also just like to point out that that I am a Boots Healthcare Advisor, and have taken 5 exams that allow me to know and understand ‘back wall’ (pharmaceutical) products, as well as sell them. Whilst a lot of the products I may talk about aren’t ‘back wall’, I still know exactly what products should be used for what symptoms, and what the best solution is 9/10 times.

So my illness started off as a cough on Wednesday, just a dry, tickly cough, so I started using Boots Honey and Lemon Glycerol (£2). This product doesn’t contain any medication, so anyone over the age of 1 can take it. The ingredients are literally just Glycerol, Honey and Sugar (all of which are organic compounds). This product is a suppressant, so coats the back of the throat and relieves the feeling of needing to cough, therefore stopping your sore throat. It also tastes really nice by the way, and you can get it in Blackcurrant flavour too.


My second tip a fairly obvious one, but people tend to forget. Rest. Rest. Rest. I decided it would be best to stay off uni on the Thursday so that a. I didn’t germ up the rest of the people on my course and b. I could have a bit of extra sleep and rest my body so that it could fight off whatever was trying to kill me (that was dramatic).

One tablet I would recommend taking is Day Nurse capsules, they contain paracetamol (basic painkiller), Pseudoephedrine Hydrochloride (decongestant to stop blocked nose) and Pholcodine (a cough suppressant). They’re none drowsy and tackle all flu-like symptoms (Night Nurse is also brilliant for taking before bed).


You’re going to be blowing your nose a lot which can lead to a chapped and sore nose, so as well as using tissue with balm I highly recommend warming a little bit of Coconut Oil and moisturising around your nose where it is likely to become chapped. This has been a life saver this week because I hate it when my nose is sore and it clears the chapped areas in minutes, literally.

One for the boyfriends – cuddles. I don’t know if it’s scientifically proven, but Jake’s cuddles always make me feel better when I’m poorly, as well as his cups of tea.

On a more serious note, try to steer away from caffeine as it will dehydrate you and give you a headache, so drink as much water as possible as it will flush the virus through your system and it will actually make you feel a lot fresher.


Speaking of feeling fresher, I feel like putting makeup on and taking a little care of yourself always makes you feel better. The look good, feel great theory. Even a bit of foundation can make you feel a bit better and people won’t constantly say ‘god, you look ill’ or ‘are you tired?’ or ‘you look a bit rough’. Also taking the time to look after your hair can help, so I decided to use the Aussie 3 minute miracle deep conditioner to make my hair look healthier and less dull, as it can always look a bit naff and dry when I’m under the weather.


Olbas Oil inhalers are a godsend. For £1.50 you can have clear airways all day long. I’ve been using this at work so that I’m not mega snuffley throughout my shift and it really helps just before bed and as soon as you wake up, as that’s when you tend to feel more congested.


Sneezing fits usually accompany the flu, so pocket tissues and hand sanitiser are a definite must to stop the germs spreading – the last thing you want is everyone else in the house getting ill (because then who would make the brews??)


Finally, the classic Vics Vapour Rub, a family favourite through generations. Put a little bit on a tissue then rub it on your chest, then leave the tissue on the bedside table for clear breathing all night long.


So there we have it, 10 fairly cheap and mainly drug-free remedies for getting over a cold. I’ve also heard that different fruit tea varieties can be beneficial, but I just don’t like them  and I don’t see the point in forcing myself to drink something I don’t like when I already feel rubbish. Hope everyone feeling poorly feels better soon.


Beff xx


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