Preventative Methods to Take to Fend Off the Flu
Flu Series Post 4
Exercise – You Were Built to Move!
Though it is easy to let your exercise routine slip during the busy holiday season, it is crucial to keep to your routine and move your body regularly. Regular exercise is associated with improved immune function. It also a great stress reliever and helps us sleep. Our only caution with exercise is to avoid training too hard, especially when tired or run down. Over-training can have the opposite effect, depressing the immune system. When you feel tired or have slept poorly, take a day off or keep the workout light. Recovery is every bit as important as the exercise itself.
Stress – The Most Underrated Cause of Illness
While we all understand intuitively that stress is bad for us, most of us underestimate its impact on our physical health. Stress weakens the immune system, causes inflammation, and makes you more susceptible to colds and flu. When stress becomes chronic, we may become so used to it we don’t even recognize we are stressed. For some of us, the holiday season is the most stressful part of the year. Refrain from overcommitting yourself this holiday season and learn a stress management technique such as meditation or yoga. Adequate sleep and exercise are also important for managing stress.
Supplements and Herbs
There are a few things that you can take preventatively to protect your health during the cold and flu season.
Below are a few of our favorites:
Immune tea is a combination of herbs that are both anti-viral and immune supportive. Drink several cups a day if you think you have been exposed to a virus or are feeling run down, or drink it daily throughout the cold and flu season for extra protection. It is safe for regular use and you can pick up the ingredients at Arizona Natural Health Center or your local health food store or herb shop.
Everyday Herbal Immune Tea
• ¼ cup Rose hips
• 1 cup Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) dried leaf
• ¼ cup Elderberry (Sambucus nigra) dried berries
• ¼ cup shredded Astragalus (Astragalus membranaceus) root
• ½ cup Oatstraw (Avena sativa) dried herb
• 8 cups water
Place all ingredients in a large pot and cover. Heat on low until mixture starts to simmer. Remove from heat, leave pot covered and allow to cool for at least 2 hours to extract medicinal ingredients. Strain into a container with a lid and store in the fridge for up to 5 days. This can be served cold or warm. To serve this tea warm, gently heat to desired temperature. You can sweeten with a little bit of raw honey or stevia if desired.
Medicinal Mushroom Blends. Another way to benefit from the powerful immune enhancing benefits of mushrooms is to take a mushroom supplement. This is an easy way to add mushrooms to your daily routine and also allows you to benefit from mushrooms that are not easily found in the local grocery store. There are many good quality medicinal mushroom products on the market. Our favorite all-purpose mushroom blend is Stamets 7 by Host Defense*.
Yesterday: Protective and Harmful Foods Against the Flu
Tomorrow: The last day in our flu series! Find out what to do if your prevention methods fail.
*Amazon Affiliate Link
DISCLAIMER: The information and reference materials contained here are intended solely for the general information of the reader. It is not to be used for treatment purposes, but rather for discussion with the patient’s own physician. The information presented here is not intended to diagnose health problems or to take the place of professional medical care. The information contained herein is neither intended to dictate what constitutes reasonable, appropriate or best care for any given health issue, nor is it intended to be used as a substitute for the independent judgment of a physician for any given health issue. The major limitation of informational resources like this newsletter is the inability to take into account the unique circumstances that define the health issues of the patient. If you have persistent health problems or if you have further questions, please consult your health care provider.