Author Aly Dort / Category Lifestyle / Published: August 2019
There’s a crisp and humid chill in the air that can mean only one thing: Fall is here. And although Fall brings with it a resurgence of motivation and the predictable structure of routine, it also brings with it a much less welcome feeling or state of being... sickness.
That’s right, cold and flu season is upon us and if you have a child who attends daycare or preschool, you’re likely dreading the prevalence and persistence of these viruses.
Preparation is key, and fending off these pesky illnesses is no different in that regard.
So, how do you best prepare for cold and flu season/ Other than consuming lots of nutritious foods and moving your body regularly, there are a few ways in which you can better prepare- or prevent- a cold from getting the best of you this season.
Preventing The Common Cold With Green Tea
Our founder and tea sommelier, Sheena Brady, spoke a bit about the power of green tea being used to fight off the adenovirus, and we’re going to dive in to the why: polyphenols.
Polyphenols are a micronutrient found in many plant-based foods. They occur naturally and there are over 500 varieties that make up four main categories of polyphenols:
- Phenolic Acids
You’ve most likely heard of Flavonoids, as this type of polyphenols are what continue to demonstrate for pretty remarkable tea benefits in studies. One example of this is the flavonoid called EGCG (also known as epigallocatechin gallate) which has shown a significant correlation with lowered risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes. EGCG works by binding to the cells in your body to inhibit the growth of bacteria’s and micro-organisms that cause the influenza virus as well as the viruses that cause herpes and strep throat. How cool is that?
Green teas like Shake It Off are packed with these polyphenols and antioxidants to help boost your immune system and help you better combat that nasty cold. The ginger we’ve added to this tea benefits your throat and tummy as well, making this blend a no-brainer all season long.
If you’re needing something with a little more caffeine to help you get through another day before you’re able to rest, you might consider Yerba Mate blend, To The Finish Lime. We’ve discussed some of the remarkable tea benefits of Yerba Mate before, but we simply can’t get enough of it.
Yerba Mates contain more antioxidants than green tea and a nutritional composition that is out of this world, including 24 vitamins and minerals, 15 amino acids and more.
We’ve added lemongrass- which can help to alleviate inflammation and boost immunity- as well as green tea and and sunflower petals.
This Cold Is No Matcha For Me!
If you really need to kick a cold and get your immune system in tip top shape, than you’ll want to stock up on some Matcha Made In Heaven.
Matcha has all of the same incredible tea benefits as green teas, but it’s nutritional value is equal to about ten times that of the same cup of green tea.
This is because Matcha comes as a finely ground tea that’s blended directly into your drink instead of being steeped and removed. You end up benefitting from every bit of antioxidant and polyphenol. Consuming the entire tea leaf also means getting more fibre, chlorophyll and powerful vitamins such as Vitamin C, Megnesium, Zinc and Selenium.
In fact, Matcha contains 13x the antioxidants of pomegranates and 15x that of blueberries.
Another extremely helpful Matcha tea benefit is its versatility and ease of use. Given it’s powdered form, it’s fairly simple to mix into some milk of choice, into your smoothie or simply some water. You can even incorporate it into your baking! The best way to consume it when you start to feel that tickle in your throat?
Matcha Shots, recommends Sheena. Especially for those mornings you’re in a hurry and don’t have the time to wait for your tea to steep. It’s a simple way to get all of those nutrients into your body in a flash, whether you’re heading out the door, or back to bed.
An important quality to look for in Matcha is that it’s high grade, pure Matcha. The quality of your tea reflects the quality of nutrients you’re receiving. We’re proud to say that our Matcha is sourced from a small tea plantation in Japan to bring you the best ceremonial grade Matcha we can find.
What About The Caffeine-Free Options?
Perhaps it’s close to bedtime, you’ve had too much caffeine today or you’re looking for something soothing for your child as well. Whatever the case may be, there are a few herbal blends you can rely on for relief this season!
Teas from the mint family are long renowned for their soothing properties. The fresh, minty flavour and menthol helps with decongestion and unblocking airways to improve breathing. I’ve also found peppermint teas to be particularly soothing for a sore or itchy throat.
The mint found in our Midnight Mint loose leaf tea benefits you in a myriad of ways, though! It has what’s called virucidal properties, which can help prevent pathogens from replicating, and it can help to reduce aches and pains that often accompany the cold and flu. The rosehip and ginger we’ve added to this blend have both demonstrated the ability to boost immunity and help combat illness, as well.
This goes without saying, but you’ll want to allow the tea to cool significantly before offering to your child.
Another option is to use some of your Midnight Mint to create a steam bath for you or your child. Simply put the tea and hot water into a large bowl and hold your face overtop. You can drape a cloth overtop of your head to keep the steam inside. Inhale deeply for 2-5 minutes to help alleviate congestion.
Self Care Is Health Care!
It’s easy to get swept into the business of Fall, with Back-To-School and all of the holidays quickly approaching, but it is so important to take the time to rest amidst the chaos. Especially when our bodies are asking us to slow down and rest!
Whether you are trying to prevent a cold from happening in the first place, fend it off at its first sign of life or soothe a cold that’s already gotten the best of you, our goal is to empower you through each season of life: Even cold and flu season.
Aly Dort is a freelance illustrator and stationery designer living in Halifax, N.S. She is passionate about mental health, social sustainability and empowering those around her.