The end (of flu season) is near!

Teresa Lau's picture

Spring is just around the corner, and for those of us who have been hit by the flu this winter, it couldn't come soon enough! We've had one of the worst flu seasons in years, and if you were among the millions affected, you likely suffered symptoms that were more severe than usual. The most common symptoms I've seen in the clinic have been extreme fatigue, headaches, feeling feverish or having chills, sore throat, and a cough that lingers on for weeks. If you are still feeling the effects of the flu, staying hydrated and getting lots of rest is key to recovery. Stick with a lighter diet of soups and stews and avoid eating spicy or heavy foods that are difficult to digest. A visit to your Chinese medicine practitioner can help alleviate some of the symptoms with acupuncture and/or herbal medicine.

For that stubborn cough that won't go away, one of my favorite over-the-counter herbal remedies is honey loquat syrup. It contains a number of herbs that help soothe the lung and bronchial tract, expels phlegm, and stops coughs--think of it as a better-tasting herbal version of Robitussin. This is a widely popular product that has been around for decades; most Chinese households will have this on hand during flu season. It's also great for smokers' cough too. For adults, take 1 tablespoon dissolved in warm water 3 times daily. If you live near a Chinatown, you'll find this in stores. Or, just order it from Amazon and have it delivered to your door.