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My beautiful neti sitting in my bathroom.

Little Girl came home on Monday with her first preschool cold. No sniffles, just a cough. She’s actually really good about covering her mouth with her elbow, but she’s also only three. Sometimes she coughs on Mommy.

Yesterday I started getting that tell-tale burning in my sinuses as well as a pain behind my left eye that always leads to a cold. I do not have time for a cold. I have dinner out tonight with friends and a play with the girls tomorrow and a six-page white paper to write. I do not have time to be sick. I went into preventative action.

My first order of business: Using my neti pot. Don’t know what a neti is? Check out this post — one of the first I ever wrote — about the proven scientific benefits of using a neti pot, which is essentially a little teapot that you use to pour water through one nostril so it can come out the other. Since I first wrote that post, there’s been more research data to support the use of neti pots including this one proving its effectiveness for children from the University of Kansas School of Medicine and this one from the University of Padova in Padova, Italy. The Italian study actually that found that using a neti eliminated the bacteria staphylococcus aureus (better known as staph) in study subjects’ noses. Okay, so I used it and, I will not lie, because I wasn’t feeling good it was not a pleasant wash. It burned.

I also made sure I ate lots of cold-fighting foods yesterday. I had two bowls of soup, which has been found to have cold-fighting properties. I went with a tomato-based chili for lunch. (Tomatoes are high in vitamin C.) I had chicken soup for dinner. I also loaded up on garlic, adding two cloves to the chili I made.

This morning I feel better. It’s amazing, really. Was it the neti? Was it the food? Was it a combination of the two? I’m not sure, but I’m hoping that it sticks. Just to be on the safe side I am going to neti again this morning. It can’t hurt, right?

What’s your favorite cold-fighting cure? Have you ever used a neti pot? Even more important: Do you have a good chili recipe? Mine came out blech but I ate it because I couldn’t stand the thought of throwing out all that expensive organic chicken and beans. By the way, this post is how I am participating in this week’s Real Food Wednesday and Fight Back Friday, two awesome blog carnivals dedicated to promoting the use and consumption of — what else? — real food.

One Response to “Fighting a Cold: Food and the Neti”

  1. Shari G says:

    I had allergy attacks off and on for a month. A few days after using my newly purchased neti pot, my allergy attacks have stopped. Thanks Karen!

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