‘Tis The Season To Stay Hydrated -Part II

by | Career Advice

There was a lot of interest in my first article on the subject  last week.  Then I thought of more comments that I forgot to mention initially,  plus I happened upon some interesting recommendations about staying hydrated, which I’d like to share.

When humidity is low, I run a humidifier to keep the ambient humidity at least in the 40%+ range during winter months, or during times when the furnace must run. When my lips are chapped or dry, I use a natural lip balm that goes on real thin, made by Burt’s Bees. I keep it in the booth and apply it several times a day.

Now, for the additional recommendations: The following information I garnered from a recent article  written by Sybil Ihrig, L.Ac., D.O.M., who specializes in Oriental herbal medicine treatment.

More reasons and tips for staying moisturized and hydrated:

Moisturize the lungs. Take a shower and breathe the steamy air, or use a warm-air steam inhaler. Dry, caustic winter air causes mucus membranes to dry out and crack, which comprimes the integrity of the membranes, whihc can then attract virus and bacteria.

Daub a small amount of high quality oil just inside the nostrils, which moisturizes the upper respiratory tract, and helps stop pathogens from moving down the larynx.

Ingest moisturizing foods, especially fruits, like mangoes, pineaple and cherries.  She says, avoid citrus, which because if its high acidity, can bear an astringent quality, and dry out the throat. (Guess I’ll eliminate lemon in my water and tea)

Avoid most packaged snack foods, like pretzels, chips, crackers, etc. which are “dry, dry, dry and can irritate the mucous membranes of the throat. If you must have these things,  drink warm liquids.

Slighty spicy foods help generate internal moisture in respiratory tissues. Cinnamon, curry, chili peppers, etc. can be good in moderation.

And root vegetables are especially good for moisturizing throughout the body.


Here’s a wild tip from my friend, author, and voice coach, James Alburger. Take a small swallow of olive oil. Be sure to swish it around, then swallow. It lubricates the throat, and helps eliminate those nasty mouth noises, too. He says he keeps it in the studio, and it works! (I’ll have mine with some bread for dipping, please)

We as voice actors know all too well about the need to stay well, and healthy. If illness comes out in our voice, we cannot perform our jobs, and are doing ourselves and clients a disservice.

Hoping all who read this have a happy, healthy, holiday season!


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