Treating a Cold and Flu the Holistic Way

Cold prevention: The most important thing to do to prepare for cold season is to keep yourself in better physical condition, said Leopold. For him, regular exercise is a must as is getting enough sleep, keeping a lid on stress and eating predominantly plant-based foods. And using common sense, like keeping your hands away from your nose and mouth and keeping your distance from those who are sick.

Cold treatment: At the first sign of a cold, Leopold treats his symptoms extremely aggressively. His goal is to support his immune system so that it helps clear the virus and slows down the spread of symptoms.

He takes zinc gluconate lozenges, drinks plenty of herbal tea and also uses a liquid tincture of echinacea. Despite research that questioned the herbs' benefits, "I'm convinced that most of the well-done studies of echinacea suggest it seems to be effective for reducing the severity and duration of a cold." He might even head to the gym to break a sweat. "Low-level exercise simulates a fever and makes it harder for the virus to live."

Flu prevention: Leopold gets the annual shot and suggests having a conversation with your doctor about it. "We tend to forget that people do get really sick." If he knew he was exposed to influenza, he would take Tamiflu to be aggressive about curtailing it.

Flu treatment: If felled by flu, Leopold would take 500 milligrams of vitamin C three times a day. As for herbal remedies, he likes either andrographis or Siberian ginseng, taking it according to package directions.

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Cold & Flu season is here! Visit the ABCNews.com OnCall+ Cold & Flu Center to get all your questions answered about these nasty viruses.

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