Ask Jean: Baths For Cold and Flu?
Dear Jean, I always want a bath when I’m sick—do you think they actually help?—Cristina K.
Dear Cristina, I think along with the “lots of fluids, rest” advice that the doctor always gives you (and if they knee-jerk prescribe antibiotics*, I’d push back and/or investigate new doctors), they should also mention the possibility of a nice hot bath at least once a day when you’re sick. Baths do make you feel better, no?
But beyond giving whatever ails you a bit of a nudge, this gigantic packet of wet-harvested sea salt and French clay sends sickness (colds and even flu, in my experience) recovery into overdrive.
The bath itself isn’t especially pretty (though it’s very rough-hewn-Brittany-coast glamorous), and you will have a little tub cleaning to do once you’re well. But follow the directions—hot hot water, sit in it for precisely 20 minutes lest the clay start releasing the toxins it’s just pulled out of you back into the water, have an at-least 20-minute session of “sweat and relax” in a towel or old-t-shirt, under the covers in bed after the bath, drink lots of water—and I promise you will feel better.
Like a tin of Band-aids and a canister of Simply Saline (Neti Pot-lite for the uncoordinated), I make sure I always have a Hot Tub in the medicine cabinet: You think you’re never going to get sick again and then suddenly you’re like, oh no…
*If you do have to take antibiotics, remember to go nuts with the probiotics—food, supplements, all of it all the time.