Hello, hello, & hello

MikBulk

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Hi, I thought I’d say ‘hello’ 3 times in the title because it sometimes pays to practice spelling words.

I’m a UK-based English person with male attributes (I’m a man) who has been animal-bits-less for 3 years, and vegan-lite (veggie) for 10, so hurrah for me! (Goldfinches are flit-dancing about as I write this on the veranda - heavenly yellow bars shimmering.)

In the last 8 months (roughly) I’ve had 4 quite nasty colds, two of which happened within in a week of each other in the last 3 weeks. I used to get 1 cold a year on average, if that.

I can’t imagine eating animal products again under any circumstances, and I’m a long, long, long (practicing spelling again) way from fixing a casual link between the maladies and veganism. But, still, does anybody have any thoughts around this unfortunate series?

Anyway, it’s very nice to be here. x
 

Lou

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I haven't read or heard anything that links colds with diets.

this is what I know (or think I know) about colds.
they are viruses. Just like the flu. in fact, the only difference between a cold and the flu is severity

You only can get a specific cold (or flu) once. After that, you are immune to that cold. The problem is that the viruses keep mutating.

The severity of a cold (or flu) is most affected by that particular virus. but it can be exacerbated by your general health and strength. It's way more likely for an old or sick person to die of the flu.

the level of care a sick person gets also affects the severity and the recovery period. this means that colds will feel worse if you are already weakened or stressed and if you don't receive (or give yourself) proper care.

I don't think the strength of your immune system can keep you from catching a cold. But I'm pretty sure it can speed or slow your recovery.

Good nutrition is important for a good immune system.

One of the things that makes colds so ubiquitous is that they are airborne diseases. They also have incubation periods. which means a person can be sick but without symptoms and spread the disease.

----
I think it's unlikely that it's your diet causing you to catch more colds. You've been vegan for 3 years but only started getting sick this year. Er... did you change anything this year? maybe you stopped eating something or changed the brand of your multivitamin?

I think it's more likely it has to do with exposure. Was this year particularly bad in your area for colds? How about your friends and coworkers, were they sick a lot too? Did you get a new job? a new girlfriend? Make new friends? Move?

Were you under a lot of stress? Grieving? the "let down effect" has been well documented.*

But i think the most important factor in getting colds is exposure. If Jim and Kathy and Harold who work in your office each got sick once and you got sick three times it is probably because Kathy already had Jim's cold last year but not Harold's. And Harold had Kathy's but not Jim's.

The best defense to keep from getting colds is really good hand hygiene. Wash your hands before each meal. and between meals keep your hands away from your face. and once you get a cold - go to bed and rest. stay hydrated. hydrate. hydrate. hydrate.



*https://www.huffpost.com/entry/let-down-effect-sickness_n_568d60e0e4b0a2b6fb6e510b
 
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MikBulk

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I haven't read or heard anything that links colds with diets.

this is what I know (or think I know) about colds.
they are viruses. Just like the flu. in fact, the only difference between a cold and the flu is severity

You only can get a specific cold (or flu) once. After that, you are immune to that cold. The problem is that the viruses keep mutating.

The severity of a cold (or flu) is most affected by that particular virus. but it can be exacerbated by your general health and strength. It's way more likely for an old or sick person to die of the flu.

the level of care a sick person gets also affects the severity and the recovery period. this means that colds will feel worse if you are already weakened or stressed and if you don't receive (or give yourself) proper care.

I don't think the strength of your immune system can keep you from catching a cold. But I'm pretty sure it can speed or slow your recovery.

Good nutrition is important for a good immune system.

One of the things that makes colds so ubiquitous is that they are airborne diseases. They also have incubation periods. which means a person can be sick but without symptoms and spread the disease.

----
I think it's unlikely that it's your diet causing you to catch more colds. You've been vegan for 3 years but only started getting sick this year. Er... did you change anything this year? maybe you stopped eating something or changed the brand of your multivitamin?

I think it's more likely it has to do with exposure. Was this year particularly bad in your area for colds? How about your friends and coworkers, were they sick a lot too? Did you get a new job? a new girlfriend? Make new friends? Move?

Were you under a lot of stress? Grieving? the "let down effect" has been well documented.*

But i think the most important factor in getting colds is exposure. If Jim and Kathy and Harold who work in your office each got sick once and you got sick three times it is probably because Kathy already had Jim's cold last year but not Harold's. And Harold had Kathy's but not Jim's.

The best defense to keep from getting colds is really good hand hygiene. Wash your hands before each meal. and between meals keep your hands away from your face. and once you get a cold - go to bed and rest. stay hydrated. hydrate. hydrate. hydrate.



*https://www.huffpost.com/entry/let-down-effect-sickness_n_568d60e0e4b0a2b6fb6e510b
Thanks so much for that! Very informative - and soothing! I started a new job roughly 10 months ago which has seen me travel around the country loads more, which is a blatantly obvious connection to the bout of colds. However, it’s good to check all the angles. You’ve told me what I wanted to hear, with the key line being ‘no known connection between diets and colds’. Thanks again!
 
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Lou

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with the key line being ‘no known connection between diets and colds’. Thanks again!
'

Did I say that? that might be a bit of an overstatement.

so you have been "Traveling around the country"

There is a super strong correlation between airplane rides and colds.
All that recirculated air and all those people. Trains and buses aren't so bad but again - all those people. Plus every time you change locations gives you the opportunity to come into contact with viruses you don't have immunity for.

There are some vitamins and supplements that supposedly boost immunity. Not sure how much valid scientific evidence establishes that. Now I can't remember if the Vitamin C thing was ever really proven. but it's easy to boost your vitamin C, especially with fruits and vegetables. AND no downside. There was also some talk about zinc being important years ago. And that some vegan diets are a little deficient in zinc. I even bought a bottle of zinc when I changed jobs and kept getting sick. but the dosage I was taking was making me nauseous and stopped taking them.
 
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MikBulk

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'

Did I say that? that might be a bit of an overstatement.

so you have been "Traveling around the country"

There is a super strong correlation between airplane rides and colds.
All that recirculated air and all those people. Trains and buses aren't so bad but again - all those people. Plus every time you change locations gives you the opportunity to come into contact with viruses you don't have immunity for.

There are some vitamins and supplements that supposedly boost immunity. Not sure how much valid scientific evidence establishes that. Now I can't remember if the Vitamin C thing was ever really proven. but it's easy to boost your vitamin C, especially with fruits and vegetables. AND no downside. There was also some talk about zinc being important years ago. And that some vegan diets are a little deficient in zinc. I even bought a bottle of zinc when I changed jobs and kept getting sick. but the dosage I was taking was making me nauseous and stopped taking them.
Well, I drive around the country rather than taking planes, trains etc but come into contact with lots of people at big events - plus I stay in lots of different hotels (which I’m beginning to really dislike) so I imagine that’s a good way to meet new viruses!

According to the NHS, there’s no evidence that vitamin C boosts immunity - but it really can’t hurt, can it? Annoyingly, I’m not a big fan of fruit so I try to make up for it with homemade smoothies. Are there any fruits which you believe are particularly healthy/useful that maybe we don’t tend to eat enough of?

Cheers
 

Lou

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Well, I drive around the country rather than taking planes, trains etc but come into contact with lots of people at big events - plus I stay in lots of different hotels (which I’m beginning to really dislike) so I imagine that’s a good way to meet new viruses!

According to the NHS, there’s no evidence that vitamin C boosts immunity - but it really can’t hurt, can it? Annoyingly, I’m not a big fan of fruit so I try to make up for it with homemade smoothies. Are there any fruits which you believe are particularly healthy/useful that maybe we don’t tend to eat enough of?

Cheers

Lots of new people from lots of places is your culprit. Mystery solved.
Since you are not in planes, then really good hygiene should help a lot. And.... eventually, you may run out of new viruses.

Like I said earlier wash your hands before meals and keep your hands away from your face. A hand sanitizer can be used when you can't use soap and water. But soap and water are best.

The Internet is full of suggestions of what to eat (or do) to avoid colds. And most of them seem to be either old wives tales or just stuff without any or much evidence. But i think ANY food that is good for you is good for your immune system.

To me it seems that when you are driving it is a great time to munch on some fruit. There must be some fruit you like. Cherries? grapes? dried apricots? dates?

Here are my two favorite smoothie recipes

Milk, peanut butter, banana. flax seed.

Juice (preferably fresh), banana, and mango and/or pineapple.
 
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veganDreama

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Hello and welcome! I eat a lot of melon and blue berries which both contain lots of vitamin C. I try to eat lots with vitamin C because it helps with Iron absorption and I need to have enough Iron to give blood.