Cold & Flu

A Tale of Two Flus

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Revised on December 12th, 2022

man in winter clothes wit a hot water bottle

Flu incidence is high across the U.S. right now. But that’s not the only virus that can leave us down and out this time of year.

Norovirus, sometimes called stomach flu, is another highly contagious illness more common during winter. Like influenza, norovirus outbreaks tend to occur more in the colder months between November and April.

Though the names sound similar, it’s important to know that flu and stomach flu are not the same thing. Flu affects the upper respiratory system and causes fever, body aches, and chills. Stomach flu presents itself much differently, with painful symptoms like abdominal cramping, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.

Like any virus, the stomach flu must run its course, which typically lasts from one to three days. You can support your body during this time by staying hydrated with enough water and salts to replenish the fluids you’re losing. Consider staying away from solid foods until your stomach is settled. When you feel well enough to eat again, start slowly with a bland diet that’s easy on the tummy (think tea, toast, rice, and bananas).

There are a few homeopathic single medicines that can help you weather this storm.

Cinchona officinalis can help relieve weakness due to loss of fluids (diarrhea, bleeding, or sweating), with gas and bloating.* Use Podophyllum peltatum for diarrhea accompanied by intestinal growling and pain.*

Nux vomica is a popular remedy for stomach aches, nausea, and heartburn associated with stomach flu.* Colocynthis can help with painful abdominal cramps.*

To help you find the right homeopathic medicine for symptoms for various kinds of flu and other common winter ailments, explore our free Medicine Finder app.

*Claims based on traditional homeopathic practice, not accepted medical evidence. Not FDA evaluated.

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