13 Ways to Prevent the Flu Naturally
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There are many ways to prevent the flu naturally – most notably would be proper hand washing, lots of Vitamin C, lots of fluids, and avoiding those that are already sick with the flu. However, sometimes you can catch a cold (or the flu) even if you're very careful. These tips were sent in by Slap Dash Minions when I asked for help on naturally preventing the flu. Add your own to the comments!
You've read my rant about uneducated parents that vaccinate, now read these tips on preventing the flu without vaccinating:
1. Eat a wide variety of fresh fruits and veggies – foods packed with the vitamins and minerals you need to keep your immune system strong year-round. An easy way to make sure you get the right foods in your diet is to remember to “eat the rainbow“.
2. Get plenty of sleep. If you're sleep-deprived, your immune system can be weakened. Aim for 8 hours a night. Realistically, 6 should be fine if you can't get 8. Less than 6 and you're running on fumes, bro.
3. Take Omega-3 supplements daily (this means before you get sick!). The fatty acid in omega-3 fortify your immune system. It's also been said that omega-3s can increase airflow and protect your lungs from respiratory infections.
4. Try Astragalus and Echinacea – echinacea (a plant) has helped Saff's asthma many times (read more on webMD), while astragalus (a root) is known to cure colds (read more on webMD). It's best to take astragalus all winter long, while echinacea is best if taken at the onset of cold or flu symptoms.
5. Vitamin D boosts immunity, and can also help reduce the risk of respiratory infections for those with asthma. Studies show that adequate amounts of Vitamin D produce a virus-killing protein called cathelicidin. Take Vitamin D all year long.
6. Clean and disinfect surfaces at home, school, and work. This one is obvious, but sometimes we get lazy and/or busy, or we forget. Don't let your guard down! Even if nobody is sick, keep things clean.
7. Zinc and Ginseng were recommended to me by a pharmacist, when we were discussing the flu shot. She said most of the people coming in to ask her questions have already received the flu shot, and got the flu anyway, so they're asking her how to get better – fast. While EmergenC and Airborne are helpful, Zinc and Ginseng supplements help naturally boost immunity by increasing white blood cells. The best way to get rid of the flu is to boost your immune system! Take Zing and Ginseng when you feel like you might be getting sick. Keep in mind that taking more than 50mg of zinc daily can suppress your immune system, so don't overdo it.
8. Add garlic! You know that garlic has antibacterial properties, but did you know it can prevent infections from spreading? Two raw garlic cloves will give you your daily serving needed to reap the benefits of this healthy herb.
9. Exercise. Even if you don't feel like it, get out and exercise at least an hour a day. No excuses. I don't care if it's a walk, jog, or bike ride… get it done. No excuses. Keep your mind and body strong, and it will love you. :) Check out my fitness challenges to motivate you to get moving.
10. Hydrogen Peroxide When you first feel the onset of cold symptoms – or even an ear infection – put a dropperful of peroxide into each of your ears. Allow it to sit until it stops bubbling. Repeat a few times a day until symptoms are gone.
11. Add cinnamon to your hot tea. Not only is hot tea beneficial in fighting off colds, cinnamon is a natural antiviral and antibiotic.
12. Elderberry Syrup has echinacea in it, which is a plus. This is something you can use daily to boost immunity, but also helps if taken at the first onset of cold/flu symptoms. If nothing else, Elderberry syrup will help reduce the length of your cold.
13. Essential oils have benefits in many areas of our lives, but many are natural antibacterials. Diffuse essential oils or apply them to the bottom of your feet. Try oregano oil as an antihistamine. Beware of buying essential oils in bulk online for cheap – good essential oils are NOT cheap.