How To Avoid The Flu and Boost Your Immune System
When cold-and-flu season arrives, it can seem challenging to stay healthy.
But don’t give up so easily, it doesn’t have to be impossible!
Implementing some healthy habits may go a long way to improve your chances to beat a cold or flu and stay healthy.
Here are 12 tips of healthy habits that can help to avoid the flu and boost a STRONG immune system:
1. Proper hand washing
Proper hand washing is the most effective way to avoid the flu and colds, not to mention other infectious diseases as well. It’s the best habit you can do to avoid the flu, other viruses and keep germs at bay.
Wash your hands often, and always before meals, after going to the restroom (of course!!!), coming home from shopping or from work and whenever you touch things that might be full of germs, for example door knobs, stair railings, magazines in waiting rooms, pets…
Proper hand washing means you should do it for at least 20 seconds, “rub” all your fingers with soap and rinse!
You might not even be aware that the common flu virus often enters the body through the face. The best way to avoid this is therefore to steer clear of touching your face.
Quit meddling with your eyes, nose, ears, and putting your hands near your mouth. Just put simply, leave your hands down!
2. Get enough sleep
When you get a good night’s sleep, melatonin levels rise and that improves immunity.
The best way to get a good night’s sleep is to go to bed at approximately the same time every night, and don’t look at blue screens before going to sleep.
Also: keep your room cool and remove all artificial light sources from your bedroom to ensure the room is completely dark.
Most people need 7-8 hours a night of restful sleep,
3. Don’t share personal items
Don’t share personal items like lip balm, mascara, drinks, and other things that touch your face. If you don’t share your stuff, you don’t share germs.
Also: remember to regularly clean surfaces you touch often, like your phone, iPad, laptop keyboard and remote controls.
4. Stress and worry less
Don’t let stress and worrying get the better of you. Stress taxes the adrenals, the heart, and the entire immune system.
Constant worrying causes the stress hormones cortisol and epinephrine levels to rise, which can weaken the body’s overall immunity.
There is a risk that the immune system plummets when cortisol levels are chronically high.
When you feel stressed, take a brief, fast paced walk around your neighborhood. Meditation and other exercises can also help to manage stress and a worrying mind.
5. Eat an apple a day
I’m sure you’ve heard as a kid: “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”.
There is actually some truth in it. Red apples contain the natural antioxidant quercetin, which is known to strengthen the immune system.
If you don’t like or tolerate apples, you can also get it from eg broccoli and green tea. You can also get it from high-quality nutritional supplements.
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6. Drink plenty of water
Our bodies depend on water to survive. It’s is one of the key elements in sustaining life.
The human body consists of 60% water, so it only makes sense that staying hydrated properly can minimize your risk of becoming ill.
When you stay hydrated you assist your body in maintaining the proper harmony in cellular functioning. Water serves many functions, like removal of waste, cellular hydration, transportation of nutrients, flushing of toxins, regulate temperature and much more.
The average adult needs at a minimum approximately 64 ounces (approx. 2 litres) of water a day to keep from becoming dehydrated.
7. Limit your alcohol intake
While it’s true that eg red wine has certain health beneficial properties such as antioxidants and resveratrol, it’s important to remember that alcohol also depletes nutrients and stresses the liver when enjoyed TOO much.
Therefore, make drinking an occasional pleasure and limit your total alcohol intake.
8. Avoid sugar
This is easier said than done…. But do your best to limit your sugar consumption.
Eating or drinking too much sugar curbs immune system cells that attack bacteria. This effect lasts for at least a few hours after downing a couple of sugary drinks.
When you crave something sweet – try a healthier snack, a handful of nuts, sunflower seeds, almonds or a fruit.
Sugar messes with your blood sugar balance and it makes you want more. It adds empty calories, leads to weight gain and can cause inflammation.
9. Eat healthy fat
Your health and immune system depends on healthy fats. Like for example the omega fatty acids Omega-3 and Omega-6.
Moreover, healthy fat is needed to absorb the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. It’s also needed for the adequate use of protein, it slows the absorption of food, manages inflammation, and of course it makes food taste good and give you a feeling of fullness after meals.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, organic butter from grass fed cows, wild-caught salmon and avocado are some examples of healthy fat.
10. Up your C and D vitamin intake
Colorful fruits and vegetables are full of great nutrients for the body. They are rich in nutrients like vitamins C and E, plus beta-carotene and zinc. Having an appropriate amount of vitamin C from fruits and vegetables can boost your immunity.
Go for a wide variety of brightly colored fruits and vegetables: berries, citrus fruits, kiwi, apples, red grapes, kale, onions, spinach, sweet potatoes and carrots.
Vitamin D is also super important for many things, one of them is your immune system. The best way to get it: from the sun! It can also be found in foods like fish oils, fatty fish, beef liver, cheese and egg yolks. Some doctors even consider that optimizing your vitamin D level is a more potent a preventive strategy than getting a seasonal flu vaccine and that people with significant vitamin D levels may reduce their risk of respiratory infections such as influenza by 50 percent…
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Other foods particularly good for your immune system include Coconut Oil and fresh garlic, which may help fight viruses and bacteria. Old-fashioned chicken broth soup is also worth mentioning, it’s very nutritious, and should you get sick it boosts healing.
Exercise boosts your body’s feel-good chemicals, which is good for your immune system, it also helps you sleep better.
Find an exercise that you enjoy and that suits you and try to do it regularly. A daily 30-minute walk is good for everyone.
12. Seize the day
Your mindset and emotions affect your immune system.
Therefore, work on taking control of your mind. Live in the present, smile and laugh more often!
Regrets about your past or worries about the future will only take away from living today to the fullest…
Find a purpose in your life. It doesn’t have to be a job. It can be something you’re good at, something you love and feel passionate about. People who fill their free time with purposeful activities are often happier and healthier.
Follow these healthy habits, they may help you to supercharge your immune system and avoid the flu!
So take control of your health, and encourage your family to do the same.
Should you be unfortunate and get the flu, try to get as much C- and D- vitamins you can to help your body fight it.
Be aware of also, that there may be a link between influenza and sepsis (blood poisoning), which is very dangerous and must be treated correctly immediately, I here refer you to Dr. Mercola’s article about this for more information: “How Influenza Can Lead To Sepsis”
“While influenza can indeed be deadly in rare cases, what most health experts fail to tell you is that these deaths are typically the result of secondary infections, not the flu virus itself. Importantly, research has highlighted the link between influenza and severe sepsis — a progressive disease process initiated by an aggressive, dysfunctional immune response to an infection in the bloodstream (which is why it’s sometimes referred to as blood poisoning).
Symptoms of sepsis are often overlooked, even by health professionals, and without prompt treatment, the condition can be deadly. Unfortunately, conventional treatments often fail, and most hospitals have yet to embrace the use of intravenous (IV) vitamin C, hydrocortisone and thiamine,2 which has been shown to reduce sepsis mortality from 40 to a mere 8.5 percent.” Dr. Mercola “How Influenza Can Lead To Sepsis”
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Do you think Healthy Habits like those mentioned in this post can boost your immune system and help avoid the flu?
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