Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Cold and Flu Season: 21 Ways to prevent illness

It's cold and flu season. The CDC says flu season can start as early as October and end as late as May. They also push the flu vaccine but I hate putting that stuff into my body! For me, prevention is key.

There are a lot simple things you can do to keep yourself healthy and boost your immune system. Some of these things are obvious, like washing your hands. Some, such as the handbag tip that is on my list, are so obvious. Here is my list of my favorite stay healthy tips!

21 Easy Things You Can Do To Stay Healthy

Supplements
People swear by Airborne. It's an immune support supplement full of vitamins, minerals and herbs to help strengthen your immune system.  Chew 1-4 tablets at a time. You can take it 3 times per day. 

airborne immune support

Proper Hand Washing

Wash your hands frequently throughout the day. Suds up with soap and water for 20-30 seconds and rinse well. A regular soap, not antibacterial, will do the job without creating resistant bugs. Always apply hand lotion after washing to fight dryness.

Use Hand Sanitizer
Use an alcohol based hand sanitizer and alcohol based wipes if you are in a place where you can't wash your hands. 


Clean your Handbag
We set our handbags down everywhere. I don't even want to think about what germs are on them! Carry a purse that is made of a material that you can wipe down frequently with an alcohol based wipe.

Use Wipes
Use alcohol based wipes on door and plumbing handles in public bathrooms. Use a paper towel to protect your hand when opening the exit door in the bathroom. Wipe your shopping cart handle with a wipe at the grocery store. Wipe down the keyboard of a shared computer at work and the phone that is shared at work befor use.

Hands off the Face
Avoid touching your face. Cold and flu germ could be on your hands waiting to infect you. Don't bite your nails. Germs may be lurking under your nails.

Epsom Salt
Take an warm Epsom salt bath at the first sign of illness to dilate the blood vessels and boost circulation, decrease cold and flu symptoms and promote quicker healing. Epsom Salt, which is Magnesium Sulfate, eases muscle aches, detoxifies the body and actually raises white blood cell counts. Dissolve 2 cups of Epsom Salt in a warm bath. Relax and soak for 20 minutes.You can find Epsom Salt in your local drugstore or superstore.

Get a Massage
A study done at the Cedar-Sinai Medical Center showed that a 45 minute Swedish massage significantly boosted levels NK cells and T lymphocytes, which are virus fighters, in the blood.


Aromatherapy
Try Aromatherapy. Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils for relaxation and health benefits. Many oils have high anti viral and anti bacterial  properties. Geranium, lavender, rosemary, peppermint, lemon, cinnamon, ginger, clove, basil, thyme, oregano, tea tree, ravensara, frankincense, and eucalyptus are a few good ones.  Essential Oils are used alone are too strong. Mix 5 drops of essential oil into 1 tablespoon of oil. Jojoba, avocado, almond and sunflower oils are nice oils to use. Massage the oil on your skin. Find essential oils at health food stores.


Meditation
Try meditation to reduce stress hormones and strengthen your immune system. Here is a site to get you started with 6 steps on how to meditate. 


Vitamin C
I swear by Vitamin C! Vitamin C supports the immune system allowing you to fight of colds and flus. It also helps keep you looking younger! The body uses Vitamin C to build collagen which keeps our skin firm and young looking.  Vitamin C is found in fruits and vegetables such as broccoli, sweet green peppers, strawberries, citrus fruits and in supplement form.

Green Tea
This is another remedy I swear by! Green tea contains a powerful anti-oxidant called Epigallo Catechin  (EGCG).  This anti-oxidant fights free radicals, fights the adenovirus (a cold virus), repairs DNA, inhibits the growth of cancer cells, increases metabolism and is anti-inflammatory. Black tea is also beneficial.

Eat more Fruits and Veggies
Increase the amount of colorful fruits and veggies that you eat. They are high in anti oxidants. These plant chemicals help you fight off viruses.

Probiotics
Eat Yogurt. The probiotics it contains can help boost the activity of immune system cells helping you fight viruses.

Garlic
Use a lot of garlic in your cooking. Garlic contains compounds including allicin and diallyl sulphides to help fight viruses. Crush or chop your garlic and allow it to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes to trigger an enzyme reaction that boosts the compounds.

Water
Drink water. A hydrated body is better at fighting off illness. Drink 6 to 8 glasses per day.

Limit Alcohol
Reduce your alcohol consumption. Too much alcohol can reduce your white blood cells' ability to fight viruses for up to 24 hours. 1 drink per day for women. 2 drinks per day for men.

Exercise
Exercise 30 to 60 minutes a day to boost your immune system. Try walking.

Get your Beauty Sleep
Sleep 7-9 hours per night. A tired body is less resistant to illness.


Use a humidifier.  
Moist air seems to effect how viruses linger in the air. Dry air allows them to float around, while moist air seems make them heavy and fall to the floor faster.

Keep your Phone Clean
Keep your phone clean with alcohol based wipes. We set them down everywhere like we do with our handbags.

Clean your cell phone

Have a Healthy Day!
  xo 
Jill
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