31. Jan 2020

Emanuel Munkhambwa

Myths about the immune system

Here are the five most common myths about the immune system and colds

Die fünf häufigsten Mythen in Bezug auf das Immunsystem und auf Erkältungen

Myth no. 1: Cold weather causes a cold.

Colds are more common during the winter seasons. However, the chilly weather isn’t to blame, but instead the large temperature fluctuations. Tip: Your room temperature should ideally be no more than 20°C. Regularly air your office and living room.

Myth no. 2: You should treat a cold with antibiotics.

Wrong, antibiotics only work against bacteria! The flu is always, and colds are mostly caused by viral infections. Antibiotics are most certainly the wrong option here, and even attack our natural intestinal flora and can result in diarrhoea, for example. If antibiotics are prescribed too often, it can also lead to resistance. This means that certain antibiotics aren’t effective anymore. Tip: Only take antibiotics if prescribed by your doctor.

Myth no. 3: A chicken soup works „wonders“.

There might actually be some truth to this. Almost everyone feels better after a bowl of chicken soup: It raises the body temperature, alleviates aching limbs and provides the body with nutrients such as vitamins, iron and zinc that are important for the immune system. Tip: Use an organic chicken that was bred without antibiotics for your soup.

Myth no. 4: You can do sports as soon as you feel better.

Many athletes and sports fans start training again once the fever is gone. However, your body needs about two weeks to recover completely after the flu. Otherwise, you could risk weakening or damaging your body in the long run. A gentle start back into training with moderate exercises such as a brisk walk or climbing stairs is recommended. Exercising out in the open strengthens the immune system.

Myth no. 5: Going to the sauna regularly boosts the immune system

Warmth is rightly associated with relaxation. It not only allows our bodies to „sweat out“ the daily stress but the extreme temperature difference also activates the metabolism and circulatory system, as well as loosening the muscles. Visiting the sauna once a week is more than enough. However, you should absolutely take a break when you feel sick.


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