Autumn means colder weather, staying indoors and flu season. It’s a time to boost your immune system and do what you can to avoid getting sick.
There are over 200 different viruses that cause colds, so unfortunately, it’s hard for us not to periodically succumb to one of them. We blow our noses and cough and sneeze, but we can usually keep on going.
Getting the flu is another matter as fever, body aches, and cough often force a person to bed. And if you are older or have a chronic illness a case of the flu can become complicated very quickly. That’s why the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) creates a flu vaccine every year that works to protect you from the three primary flu viruses of that season. That’s a major way to fight the flu.
Here are some other ways to stay well as the flu season progresses:
Improve your nutrition by eating colorful fruits and vegetables that add more vitamins to your diet; garlic has antiviral and antibacterial capability; black tea increases levels of virus-fighting interferon;
- Eliminate trans fats, those dense fats found in margarine and baked goods; these promote inflammation in the body, thus lessening the ability of the immune system to fight infection; read nutrition labels to search out trans fats;
- Limit your intake of simple sugars that also suppress immune function that attacks bacteria in the body; note: sugar is often called something else; (http://www.fitsugar.com/Other-Names-Sugar-Appear-Labels-810571)
- Get moving—research reveals that regular moderate exercise increases your body’s production of leukocytes, cells that fight infection; a daily walk or 30 minutes on the treadmill can boost your immune system;
- Find time each day to relax, deep breathe and reduce your stress; anyone under stress is more prone to illness and infection;
- Sleep eight hours per night if you can; sleep recharges your immune system;
- Wash your hands!!! Assist everything else you are doing by avoiding germs: keep hand sanitizer with you and use it; spot clean remotes, door knobs and handles when someone in the household is sick; wash hands frequently while in public places;
- Don’t introduce viruses: avoid rubbing your eyes, touching your face which introduces viruses into your body;
- Hydrate well and avoid alcohol; it’s good to flush your system by urinating frequently;
- Add these foods to your diet: black-eyed peas, carrots, green or black tea, yogurt with probiotics, tomatoes, mushrooms and almonds–all considered to be flu-fighting foods.
Common sense and employing these simple changes will keep you up and moving during flu season. Your immune system will reward you for your efforts.
Please share things that you do to stay healthy when flu season hits.