Do you want to avoid the colds and 'flu' that do the rounds at this time of the year? Are your kids always coming home from school or kindy with snotty noses, even in the summer!?
My guess is you constantly get told that it is the 'bug going around' and that it is just 'that time of the year' and 'there is nothing you can do about it'. Of course, if you see your GP, you will be given the usual anti-biotics and persuaded to have the flu 'jab', and if you did not have 'flu' you probably will get something resembling it after the jab. What if there was a better way of preventing a lot of these colds and snotty noses? Something so simple it blows the mind, yet it is something many people around the world do instinctively, as part of their culture, not because they have been told to. Taking these easy measures could eliminate colds and 'flu' for good.
In days gone past, the Chinese laboureres used to have a saying, "Face your back to teh breeze, face your front to the coffin". This ight sound quirky, however, your nervous system in your spine controls many functions of the body, but most importantly the system that controls all your blood flow in the body. Cooling the back too suddenly can cause blood to move from your skin into your body, into places like the gut, lungs, throat, sinuses, etc. These places are able to 'store' blood in larger quantities and if this congestion remains for lengthy periods of time, inflammation can occur. Any longer and this inflammation becomes infection, illness and even death in some weaker subjects.
Sound scary? It does, but it is also true. Sudden changes in temperature on the skin surface, can shunt large amounts of blood into various cavities in the body. In the neck area, cold drafts on the neck can shunt blood into the throat, where the blood vessels dilate (open) to accept the tightening of the outer blood vessels. This dilation results in a slower blood flow rate, thus less oxygen, and the bacteria that already reside in the throat doing their good deeds living in oxygen-deprived areas, are now thrilled to have less oxygen, so they can proliferate and their increase in numbers can result in infection (sore throat/strep throat). So, you can see, it is NOT teh bacteria/bug that causes the problem, it is merely part of the process and responding to the change in oxygen levels.
The same could be said for the gut and a common condition called gastro-enteritis (vomiting and diarroeah), which can afflict anyone exposed to too much cold. Cool the body/trunk too quickly, and the intestines blood vessels open up to store the lost blood from the skin. This results again in inflammation and possible infection. Bugs again are not to blame, just exposure to cold. Pneumonias, sinusitis, and other chest infections after exposure to cold can be explained in the same way.
So, how do we avoid this? Well, obviously try and not get too cold for a start. At this time of the year (Autumn) it is easy to get caught out, when the weather is still warm during the day, but the shadows get cooler. We dress for teh summer and not for the Autumn. Light clothes, often exposing some part of the torso, especially the back (ladies with low cut tops at the back), or the belly/lower back, can allow the skin to be cooled too rapidly, resulting in what has been discussed above. The most important fact, though, is that we do not have enough layers on. We should always wear at least 2 layers of clothes, ALL YEAR ROUND! A singlet or an inner garment under the shirt/blouse is essential to protect the skin from cooling. If you perspire, the undergarment gets damp, but any breeze will blow on teh dry outer garment and not cool the undergarment/skin.
Beware of the summer 'colds'. These occur as a similar process, however, the cause is slightly different in that it is the change from hot outdoors to cool, air-conditioned indoors that catches us out. At my daughter's kindy, they have air-conditioned rooms so when the kids come in from playing in the 30+ degree heat to 20 degree rooms, this change is too sudden, and the effect is the same, resulting in coughs, sneezes, colds, tummy upsets, etc, which could quite easily be avoided by ensuring the temperature is never below 24 degrees or about 5 degrees less than the outside, so the cooling effect is slower and not excessive. Also getting kids to wear a singlet all year round will definately help.
Avoid colds, keep warm and keep that 2nd layer on at all times, don't get caught out.