My Tips and Tricks for Outrunning the Flu
Although it is already February and the last few days have felt like spring, cold and flu season is still in high gear. Every day I hear about another person coming down with the flu, a bad cold, or a sinus infection.
This season can prove to be challenging in many ways:
- The lack of sunshine can lead to feeling down.
- The cold temperatures and infections that are circulating may cause you to stay isolated from friends and fun activities, which can have a direct impact on your immune system.
- The comfort foods we all enjoy and crave this time of year (although not a bad thing in moderation) can cause an imbalance in our digestive system where over 80% of our immune system lives.
For those of you who know me well, I believe strongly in prevention. Our family does not get the flu shot (I know that may cause some of you to shriek in horror – lol) but that doesn’t mean I don’t take a lot of precautions to prevent getting it. I thought I would share some of those things with you. Before I continue, I just want to be clear that this is NOT medical advice, and I highly encourage you to talk with your physician about what the right protocol is for you.
For starters, I take a product known as Influenzinum made by Boiron. It is a homeopathic product (little pellets) that dissolves under your tongue. I take it prophylactically starting in late October and again in February. Our naturopath advised a certain time and dose schedule that I follow.
I also take a daily probiotic that contains at least 25,000 CFU’s. This is important to keep your gut bacteria balanced and working hard for you.
The next product I take regularly is elderberry. This comes in many forms: liquid, gummies, lozenges. It tastes great, so it’s not hard to remember. 😉
As a child and young adult I was prone to upper respiratory infections. My doctor advised me to take NAC (which is the precursor to glutathione – the master anti-oxidant). I know for a fact that this has helped me tremendously.
Next on the list is vitamin D. I take 5,000 iu’s a day during cold and flu season, but often bump it up for a short period of time if I feel I am fighting something. It is a good idea to have your vitamin D levels checked regularly. You don’t want them too low or too high.
I also find zinc to be beneficial in boosting the immune system.
Another powerhouse in my arsenal is echinacea/goldenseal. This comes in liquid and capsule form. I recently added this into my immune defense repertoire and I have definitely noticed a difference.
One of the last, but certainly not least, products is Argentyn 23 colloidal silver. I used this when our son was undergoing chemotherapy treatments and he never developed a mouth sore, which was highly unusual AND I believe it helped him from developing neutropenic fevers. I use it today to give my immune system a boost. I follow a physician’s dosing protocol and it has worked very well.
Some of my favorite essential oils to use for cold and flu season include: lavender, oregano oil, peppermint, eucalyptus, RC, and Thieves.
Now, if I do get the flu (it happens, but thankfully not in many years!) I swear by the product called Oscillococcinum, also by Boiron. Try saying that 3 times fast! It helps tremendously with all flu-related symptoms, especially body aches.
The strength of our immune system is affected by so many other factors – our stress level, our diet, our mindset, our surroundings. So many things are out of our control but there are some things we can manage. Here’s a few more things to consider to help keep your immune system functioning well:
- Get a minimum of 7-8 hours of sleep a night
- Wash your hands frequently and for a long enough time
- Leave your shoes outside in the garage
- Eat nutritious whole food meals and limit alcohol and sugar (which directly lowers your immune system)
- Move consistently throughout the day (get up from your desk every hour to stretch or walk)
- Stay hydrated
- Diffuse essential oils in your home (Thieves, frankincense, lemon)
- Make time for fun and relaxation
I hope these tips are helpful. My desire is to support you on your health and wellness journey so you create a life you love.
Leave me a comment and let me know if you have any other immune-supporting tips that work well for you. I’d love to know!
It’s time to get up and move if you’ve been sitting reading this blog. ;
Let’s keep plugging through this season…spring is on it’s way with its promise of hope and new life (my first spring flower finally popped through the ground today)!