Do you come down with a case of the flu or other viral infections like clockwork every year as soon as the leaves start to change color, or the snow starts to fall? Do you feel helpless against these nasty “bugs”? If you said yes, and if you feel that avoiding them is beyond your ability, then read on. These are surefire ways to greatly reduce your chances of getting these viral pests this year. And if they get you, these tips and recommendations will give you the best opportunity to prevail and restore your good health.
Avoid Sugar, processed and fried foods
Sugar decreases the function of your immune system almost immediately, and as you likely know, a strong immune system is key to fighting off viruses and other illness, including the flu. It is especially imperative to avoid sugar if you feel you are coming down with something but keeping sugar out of your diet for the long haul will do wonders for your health and make your body stronger, which will make it harder for the flu to bother you. Be aware that sugar is present in foods you may not suspect like ketchup and fruit juice.
In addition to sugar avoid processed and fried foods. These foods have very little nutritional value and can make your immune system sluggish.
Drink Plenty of Purified Water
Drink a minimum of ½ ounce per pound of body weight a day. Staying well hydrated will help your body eliminate toxins and allow your immune system to work efficiently.
Get Enough Rest
Just like it becomes harder for you to get your daily tasks done if you’re tired, if your body is overly fatigued it will be harder for it to fight the flu. Regular rest will keep you strong and ensure that your body has the strength to fight off any potential invaders.
Optimize Your Vitamin A & D Levels
Vitamin A is recommended in areas world-wide where infectious diseases are rampant, as an effective strategy to reduce the incidence and severity of those diseases. Supplementation can be an effective strategy to prevent the flu.
Vitamin D interacts with your genes in numerous ways to support optimal health. Get your levels tested and work to maintain levels in the 60-80 ng/ml. Vitamin D has very potent anti-viral actions by activating the immune system to target and destroy viruses.
Always take Vitamins A & D with meals, preferably with food that contains some fat.
Take a Good Probiotic and Prebiotic Fiber
Probiotics are “friendly bacteria that support a strong immune system. Approximately 70% of the body’s immune system reside in the wall of our colon. It is called the Gut Associated Lymphoid Tissue (G.A.L.T.). Friendly bacteria are vital housekeepers and produce numerous benefits and compounds that we require to survive. Prebiotics are non-digestible plant fibers that act like fertilizer by feeding the good “bugs”.
Don’t Let Stress Become Overwhelming
We all face some stress every day, but if stress becomes overwhelming then your body will be less able to fight off the flu and other illness. It has been estimated that up to 90 percent of illness and disease is stress-related. Take time out to relax, take on fewer responsibilities and don’t beat yourself up if you can’t get it all done. Meditation and prayer are also great for reducing stress. Have you heard the phrase “let go and let God”?
When you exercise you increase your circulation and your blood flow throughout your body. The components of your immune system are also better circulated, which means your immune system has a better chance of finding an illness before it has a chance to spread. In a sense, exercising helps your immune system to be more efficient in weeding out and acting upon viruses and diseases.
Wash Your Hands and Don’t touch your nose!
Washing your hands will decrease your likelihood of spreading a virus to your nose, mouth or other people. If your immune system is strong, it should be able to fight off the virus if it does enter your body, but washing your hands provides a bit of extra protection. Also, don’t touch your nose with your hands!
Take extra Vitamin C
Take 500 mg 4-6 times a day to protect yourself. Double that dosage if you get sick.
Take black elderberry, echinacea, olive leaf extract and ginger
These have been shown to be effective against viral conditions. They can act preventatively as well as in the event of an infection. Make sure to have it on hand so you can increase dosing as soon as symptoms develop.
Take medicinal mushroom extracts
There are several medicinal mushrooms that have a long history of success in supporting the immune system and helping the body adapt to stress. They are another good option to use to combat seasonal viral conditions. Varieties include Reishi, Shiitake, Maitake, Turkey Tail, Cordyceps and Oyster Mushrooms.
Visit the shop tab here on my web site www.wellnessdoc.com/shop That will take you to a page discussing nutritional supplements (after the consent prompt). At the bottom of that page you will see a button for Nutridyn, my favorite provider of high-quality nutritional formulas. That link will take you to their web site. Once there, on that page you will see a category called “Cold & Flu Protection Kit”. Inside, you will see several products, many relating to those discussed in this article that can be used as an effective strategy not only to reduce your chances of getting sick, but to effectively help your immune system kick it if you do.