With the flu season rearing its ugly head, below is a list of some natural preventive measures you can take to avoid getting or battling this year's bug better than most:
~ Washing hands prior to eating prevents germs from spreading. Many germs are picked up by touching door knobs in public places. Keeping your hands away from your face should be practiced if you can't get to a restroom to wash your hands. Keeping a small bottle of hand disinfectant within your reach can help.
~ Sneezing or coughing in your elbow helps prevent germs from getting on your hands and also from spreading it to others.
~ Vitamin D has been shown to build immunity. Taking a vitamin D supplement under the supervision of your doctor or increasing your D levels through food can help. Low vitamin D levels have been linked to colds. A study in the Archives of Internal Medicine analyzed information on vitamin D and respiratory infections from 19,000 individuals from 1988-1994. The study concluded that those with low levels of vitamin D (less than 10 nano grams per milliliter of blood) were 36 per cent more likely to catch a cold. ( www.webmd.com).
~ Dressing warmly and appropriately for the season helps! Being exposed to the cold doesn't mean you will get sick with the flu, but if you have a weaker immune system and you get chilled, it can make you more susceptible to catching a bug.
~ I find eating plenty of vitamin packed vegetables and fruits makes me stronger. Some of my favorite immune boosting foods with high levels of vitamin c are oranges, blueberries, strawberries, and many green leafy vegetables such as kale and spinach.
~ Sipping green tea with honey has many health benefits. A recent clinical study showed that green tea based supplements reduced the risk of flu by a whopping 75 percent. Honey also as anti bacterial benefits and b vitamins. (www.naturalnews.com)
~ Help alleviate stress by meditating and exercising daily. A study in the journal Annals of Family medicine, reported that meditating and exercising showed to be helpful in preventing or battling colds and the flu. ( http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/14/meditation-flu-cold-symptoms-mindfulness-exercise_n_1671543.html).
~ According to many health experts, getting a good night's sleep can help keep the immune system stronger.
~ Finally, take a look at this great article about flu prevention, by Dr. Joel Fuhrman: http://www.drfuhrman.com/library/immune_boosting_foods.aspx.
Remember, Folks, food determines how we feel and heal!