Man Flu descended on our household last week. (Condolences gratefully accepted below)
Strangely the symptoms were similar to the very ones I had exhibited the week prior. When presented in their male form, however, those said symptoms took on a mutated version that only other women living with man-flu-inflicted men can understand.
While I just continued on, fulfilling work and parental duties, the Man Flu victim in our house needed a day off work and a couple of early finishes just to cope with blowing his nose several times an hour.
What I’ve learned from many a Man Flu season is that a Man Flu victim is unlikely to welcome any attempt to lessen any of the symptoms presented by his strain of man flu, shunning any remedies a *caring* wife/partner may facilitate for him. No, it’s all about extracting the maximum amount of sympathy from said wife/partner, all the while appearing on death’s door.
I say Man Up, Man Flu victims.
These are my secret weapons* I always have on hand during the Man (and Woman) Flu season.
1. The humble onion. There’s a big reason why it my number 1. As long as I have a bag of onions in the fridge, we will get a good night’s sleep. If the Man or the kids have a cold, sniffle or cough, I cut an onion in half and put it on a plate near their bed. The vapours from the onion open the airways and work a treat. No coughs. Seriously. Yep, it will smell like last night’s stir-fry the next morning but it will be so worth it because you’ve actually got a full night’s sleep, not one peppered by other people’s coughing and spluttering. Try it. I dare you.
2. Kleenex Eucalyptus tissues. In times of Man Flu, you need the three plies of silk touch softness … really you do. And the eucalyptus scent helps with a little decongestant action while blowing like a foghorn.
3. Lemons. I start every day with a lemon in hot water drink. During the cold and flu season we also tend to have a hot lemon and honey drink at night … that may or may not have a little Johnny Walker added to it. Strangely, Man Flu sufferers do not shun this remedy. They embrace it to the point of avoiding the lemon and honey parts and just going with the JW.
4. Ethical Nutrients Zinc Fix Raspberry. This is always in our pantry. At the first tickle, the first sign of a runny nose, I jump on this powdered form of brilliance and down a dose every few hours. The result – I can either stop the cold from taking over or, worst case scenario, the cold does take hold but its duration is not as long. I have been known to jump on other members on the family until they take their zinc as well. Does not stir as much excitement in the Man Flu sufferer as the drink above.
5. Organic honey. This is usually in the pantry for the hot lemon drinks mentioned above but if someone has a sore throat, I’ll also buy some Manuka honey, known for it’s antibacterial properties.
6. fresh-picked Olive Leaf Extract (500ml $41.95). This is a new addition to my Man Flu-busting supplies and a very welcome one, may I say? It’s been voted the 2011 Australian Women’s Weekly Health & Wellbeing Product of the Year Award and its timely arrival** in our house coincided with Day 1 of Man Flu. Mr Styling You did turn his nose up at the sight of the brown liquid but was then pleasantly surprised that it tasted ok. And you know what? His symptoms didn’t escalate as severely as they normally do. It’s a powerful antioxidant with more than 400% more antioxidant power than the equivalent amount of Vitamin C. The key to this particular product’s success is its freshness. Olive leaves are picked at sunrise and prepared for bottling that same day. Not a bad idea to take it every day during winter and keep that immune system firing. I’m a convert.
7. Lanolips 101 Ointment $17.95. When you’re breathing through your nose, your lips are next in line for the suffering. I keep mine plastered in Lanolips. The ultra medical grade lanolin is also perfect for soothing a red, irritated nose.
And there are two other products I have on hand to get me, my man and the entire family through the cold and flu season. They come from the aromatherapy and skincare company Twenty8 and I swear by their ability to treat and lessen the severity of symptoms. The creators of Twenty8 are also the authors of Like Chocolate For Women – and it’s from them that I learned the onion trick mentioned above.
Twenty8 Magnesium Oil Health Spray can be used to help with a whole heap of stuff but, in the case of Man Flu, it’s a great gargle for a sore throat and you can spray behind the knees to help your body fight the virus.
I love all the Twenty8 synergy blends – pure aromatherapy oils at their best. The Immune Boost blend is a must. If the whole family is struck down, I’ll have it “burning” in vapourisers, strategically placed in every corner of the house. I’ll also put a drop on the pillow of the afflicted. If they’re needing a quick boost, a couple of drops in the hands, rubbed together and then inhaled before rubbing the back and front of the next works in an instant.
So, the Man Flu victim is back to work today. He’s still emitting strange noises from his throat and nose. And he’s long since given up looking to me for sympathy … I just point him to all of the above.
Thanks to Jacki at Heartbeatoz for reminding me about this YouTube clip. Gold.
Has Man Flu descended on your house this winter? What’s your cold and flu remedy? Have you tried the onion trick?
*Always seek medical advice. These products have worked for me and my family but we have always visited our GP if the illness was clearly beyond that of a common cold. **This product was sent to me for trial in accordance with my disclosure policy