16 ways to avoid colds and flu
Note from Carolyn:
Check out this good information from our friends at the Agriculture Society.
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Winter is here, and if you get sick a lot this time of year, there
are many natural ways you can improve your body’s ability to stay
healthy – especially with the foods you eat and lifestyle you maintain.
Many people believe that hand-washing is one of the best ways to keep
illnesses away. In the last two decades we’ve seen a huge increase of
the use of anti-bacterial substances which are supposed to keep our
bodies healthier. But actually, these substances are toxic
and don’t help our bodies to maintain health. They wipe out all
bacteria, and our bodies need good bacteria to function optimally.
There are also many other factors which come into play toward keeping
healthy. If your body doesn’t have the right nutrients every day –
especially during times of stress, when you consume processed foods and
especially those with sugar, exposure to illness from others, and days
where sunlight is in short supply – your body will weaken and succumb to
sickness and disease.
Whether you are a person who tends to catch every cold or flu that
comes along or you just get sick once in awhile, here are some tips that
really work for keeping away bacteria, illnesses, and viruses:
Avoid eating processed foods and refined sugars Fall
and winter months are times when people tend to eat more sugary and
processed foods due to holiday activities and gatherings. Sugar is a
poison to your body and lowers immune system function. This includes
foods such as crackers, chips, most breads, bagels, pastas, cookies,
desserts, candy, juice, soda pop, and other related items. All of these
items contribute to lowered immune system function and poor health. A
good rule of thumb to follow – if it is not a whole food, avoid eating
it regularly. Load up on real, raw, whole foods for snacks and meals
Consume plenty of healthy oils and fats Real, organic butter
(grass-fed and raw is a plus), ghee, extra-virgin, cold-pressed olive
oils, coconut oils, sustainably-produced palm oil, and healthy animal
fats from organic, grass-fed sources such as lard, tallow, and drippings
from those same types of animal meats.
Be certain to obtain essential fatty acids and CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) in your diet Take fish oil daily (good source of Vitamin D), eat grass-fed meats, pasture-raised eggs, raw dairy, and safe-source fish. Good sources of other
EFAs include healthy oils like cold-pressed organic flax seed oil and
coconut oil. Read this FAQ about why people need good essential fatty acid support.
Continue to eat plenty of organic, pesticide-free fresh fruits and vegetables Especially
those in season in your local area. Vegetables and fruits are high in
nutrients and antioxidants which help thwart the development of disease
and illness when properly prepared such as cultured or eaten with healthy fats like butter, lard, tallow, coconut oil, or olive oil.
Drink plenty of mineral water, or add liquid minerals or fulvic acid There is some controversy about whether filtered water with added minerals is actually healthy for us to drink
because it’s not much different than a lot of processed foods which
have been stripped of nutrients and have synthetic added back in. Keep a
glass container with you throughout the day and sip frequently rather
than trying to gulp down many ounces at a time spread farther apart.
Avoid plastic containers, tap water, and bottled water. Tap water
contains toxins and plastic contains pthalates – both of which supress
immune system and health.
Drink bone broths and incorporate them into your meals as well
Bone broths made from the bones of healthy animals and birds on
pasture are full of easily-digested and essential nutrients which can
help your body stay healthy such as magnesium, calcium, phosphorus,
zinc, amino acids, and glucosamine (for bone health), and gelatin
(muscles, metabolism, weight, skin, digestion, hair, fingernails, joint
health). Read this post for more information on health benefits and recipes for making your own bone broths at home.
Eat real, fermented foods like home-made yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut Making
your own at home is best for optimal preservation of nutrients and
beneficial bacteria, as well as immune supporting and digestive
enhancing. Commercial yogurts, sour cream, kefir, sauerkraut, pickles,
and other foods do not have the health benefits or probiotic activity of
home-made cultured foods. See this post for more information.
Be certain to take a good probiotic each day – especially if you are lacking fermented foods
Use digestive enyzmes If you have maintained the Standard American Diet at any time in your life, your digestion is likely compromised. Altered digestive function is one of the cornerstones of disease and illness. Digestive enzymes can help you to digest foods – proteins, fats, and carbohydrates.
Watch intake of alcoholic beverages, which tend to increase during holiday months Drinking
excess alcohol can have adverse affects on appetite, blood sugar, blood
pressure and cardiovascular function, metabolic processes, and weight.
If you are a binge drinker during special occasions, cut yourself off
after two drinks and make certain you are eating healthy foods and
drinking plenty of water at the same time. Consider unpasteurized beer and wine.
Make sure you are getting adequate rest and not overextending yourself
If necessary, say no to extra tasks that you know you really won’t
have time or energy to accomplish. Stay home on a night where you might
normally go out and rest, relax, catch up, and go to bed early. Go to
bed by 10 p.m.
Set aside time for some regular exercise, preferably outdoors In
the colder months people tend to go to health clubs more. Many more
germs and toxins lurk indoors during colder months, so bundle up and go
for a walk, hike, or bike ride. You’ll be pleased with how exhilarated
you feel afterward. If you are a winter sport enthusiast, get out on the
slopes and go skiing, snowshoeing, or snowboarding. If you are an
equine enthusiast, make time to get out on your horse or a friend’s
mount during weather that is not icy.
Set aside time for contemplation, stress reduction, and relaxation
Whether that is a hot bath, a massage, tai chi, yoga, stretching,
meditation or some other method you prefer, make sure you give yourself
this time to recharge.
If you do get sick, load up on probiotics, foods with healthy fats, and everything else mentioned above Take time to pamper yourself (but
not with toxic products that contain harmful chemicals – remember -read
labels and if you cannot pronounce something or don’t know what it is,
avoid!), rest, and put off things that aren’t necessary so you can get back to a state of health quicker and easier. Read this informative post about home medicine cabinets and things you can do to remedy illness and other health issues.
Avoid taking pharmaceutical drugs and antibiotics
These substances rarely help your body to heal sooner, are
over-prescribed, and actually cause nutrient depletion and lowered
immune system function by wiping out friendly bacteria that is vital to
health. For information on nutrient depletion caused by drugs, read Supplement Your Prescription: What Your Doctor Doesn’t Know About Nutrition by Dr. Hyla Cass, M.D.
If you cannot shake a cold, flu, or illness, consider visiting
an alternative health care practitioner such as a chiropractor,
naturopathic physician, or other qualified individual These
practitioners are often very successful in alleviating health issues and
perform treatment based on the cause of the problem rather than just
If you maintain a good schedule of eating healthy, avoiding processed
foods and beverages, take proper supplementation, obtain moderate
activity, exercise, rest, and relaxation, you will notice an enormous
improvement in the way your health responds. You will have more energy,
feel more productive, and avoid catching flus and colds.
Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of the author(s). Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of the authors. You are encouraged to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.