The Common Cold, Viruses, And Raw Food Diets

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The Common Cold, Viruses, And Raw Food Diets

by Patricia Proskurniak
(Northern Alberta)

Patricia's Question: I've got a scratchy throat, congestion, and a runny nose, so I guess I have a cold.

I know a virus doesn't don't care if you're a raw foodist or not and I know there is no magic elixir in the raw food world for the common cold, but I am wondering what other raw foodists do to head off a cold or flu? Or at least to treat the symptoms?

I did pick up some throat lozenges that are made of honey and ginger mostly that really do help the throat. They do get a bit hot to the point that I think I might have to spit it out, but then it levels out.

Andrew's Answer:

Where your body's attempts to detox end and sickness begins is fine line.

Generally, those who strictly follow low fat raw vegan diets without processed raw junk foods, animal foods like honey, salt, spices, etc, for long periods of time while also meeting the requirements of a healthy lifestyle such as sun exposure and getting adequate sleep (not waking to an alarm, and feeling fully rested and unable to fall back asleep when you rise) either do not get sick or do so only rarely.

I haven't been sick since 2005, which is a pretty good run. Could I get sick? Sure, but I go through life with the assumption that I never become ill, and despite hugging many supposedly-virus-laden people over the years, so far it hasn't failed me.

Overcoming Your Cold

If you do find yourself experiencing the symptoms categorized as the common cold or flu, it's time to slow down.

While healthy food can give you the building blocks of good health, it will not do you any good when you're sick.

Only the body can heal itself, and to do that it needs to have all its energy free to clean house.


Ever notice that when you get sick you're often not as hungry as usual, or not hungry at all? The body is trying to tell you something.

The acting of breaking down food and organizing it in your body is one of the most energy-intensive biological processes you engage in. When you stop eating for long periods of time, the body can redirect that energy to healing you.

If you get sick, eating nothing (while drinking lots of water) is optimal. If you must eat, eat lightly and stick to very quick-digesting foods like water-rich fruit.

Eating processed throat lozenges may make your throat feel better, but it won't do your body any good.


When your mind is asleep, your body gets to work healing you quicker than it could if you were taking up energy with plans, worries, and Friday's grocery shopping list.

Raw Food Sick

Although getting adequate sleep is always important (especially for preventing illness), it becomes even more so when you're sick.

If you want to get better at the quickest possible rate, you'll make the time to sleep until you're unable to fall back asleep again every day, and take naps whenever you feel tired throughout the day.

Take It Easy:

Although it can be hard in today's hectic world, when you're sick you shouldn't be working hard. The best thing to do when you're not sleeping is to just lie down with your eyes closed.

If you're going stir crazy, read, take a short walk, or do other things that you find relaxing.


Not eating at all and sleeping for 11 hours at a stretch may seem radical in today's overfed, stressed-out world, but it's a healing modality that's as old as time, often-used in the animal kingdom, and highly effective. Water-only fasting can bring about amazing results.

When people follow this advice, they often recover with impressive rapidity.

Once they do, they should remember that in order to avoid becoming ill again, they need to eat and live with health in mind so they don't have to waste more of their life in a sick bed.

Following Up:

Learn how to eat a healthy raw food diet.

Read about the lifestyle elements that are so important to health.

Find out what foods are healthy and which are harmful.

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