Listen To Your Body – part 1 – Ailments

Here’s my January column from The Cockermouth Post:

Lots of people are suffering from coughs and colds just now. If you haven’t come down with anything yet, you can protect yourself by avoiding sugar (which depresses the immune system) and by eating foods rich in vitamins and enzymes.


So if you get ill what will you do? Look after yourself, rest in a warm bed with lots of hot drinks? Or will you tough it out, take some over-the-counter remedy and carry on regardless?


Your body has amazing powers to heal itself if you give it a chance. Using all your energy rushing about with your normal life, won’t leave enough reserves to fight illness. You can scrape the bottom of an empty barrel for so long but taken to extremes it can lead to problems like chronic fatigue. Your GP can tell you if you need medication (eg for a chest infection). Otherwise you’ll just want enough relief to allow you to sleep. Try hot honey and lemon.

It’s good to tune into your body and respond to its needs. Instead we’re encouraged to ignore or silence the annoying messages with drugs.

Some foods don’t suit particular individuals and will always cause indigestion. We could accept this and simply abstain. The adverts tell us to eat unsuitable food anyway and then swig some gloop. True it will end the discomfort but it also interferes with our digestive process.

A headache might mean we need a glass of water, time away from the computer screen or a few minutes resting our eyes. The drug companies tell us not to be so soft. Ignore your pain, take our pill and keep working! Muscle aches? Rub on some gel, then go and exercise! Is all of this sensible?

Top tip: Listen to what your body is trying to tell you.