Tips to Avoid the Flu

January 16, 2013

By Dr. Carolyn Anderson

Avoiding the FluThe flu season seems to be very prevalent this season. As none of us want to be sidelined by flu, there are a few steps we can take to prevent getting sick.

The first tip is if you do decide to have the controversial flu shot then make sure you go for the individually dosed fluzone shot. It has no mercury and no preservatives so it is healthier for your system.

The second tip is to take multivitamins to ensure that you getting enough nutrients to help bump up your immune system to avoid the flu. Fish oil or omega-three is really important to be taking as a supplement. I take a Carlson’s pressed omega three supplement on a regular basis. I typically take two teaspoons a day which will help to keep you healthy and help with a lot of other things as well as just avoiding the flu.

Vitamin D is really critical in helping you to avoid the flu. In fact taking a regular supplement of vitamin D can decrease your risk of developing the flu by 42% which is pretty significant. Some sources say this is only helpful if you are vitamin D deficient, but because most of us do not get our levels checked and vitamin D deficiency is common, following this supplementation routine is the best bet. I take a liquid form of vitamin D because it is significantly better absorbed than vitamin D in pill form.

The next tip is to let food be your medicine. Make sure you’re eating a healthy well-balanced diet. Avoid simple sugars that will actually feed the virus and decrease your immune system’s ability to fight off the flu.

Soup broth is incredibly helpful and you can also add things to your food like onion, garlic, tumeric, oregano, ginger. All of these things will help to boost your immune systems, so use them in your food and soups as much as possible.

Protein with every meal is also beneficial and you should eat multicolored fruits and vegetables. This is great for your general health and will also help you avoid the flu.

You also need to drink enough fluids. I typically use as a guideline for fluid intake that is based on your half of your weight in pounds. For example, if you’re 150 pounds, then you would need to drink 75 ounces of water a day which would be about four of those large water bottles.

It’s important that you’re getting at least seven hours of sleep at night so your body can recover and repair itself.  Regular moderate exercise also will help to ward off the flu. And the last tip that is sometimes recommended is to give a regular nasal saline flush.

Once you feel a cold coming, it is too late to prevent it so practice these tips on a regular basis. Not only will these tips help you avoid the flu, it will improve your health overall and increase your energy levels.

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