One of the articles in my news feed this morning had the red lettered, full alert mode headline of Flu: It’s Epidemic and It’s Spreading. Yikes. And judging from the folks I met when I ran out to take my mom grocery shopping, I wasn’t the only one who saw it. People were scrubbing down carts with wipes and my mom was pushing the elevator button with her elbow. Everyone was taking precautions. Which got me to thinking. There is nothing worse than to get rolling with healthy lifestyle choices only to be sidelined by the flu. So I thought I’d jot down some of my best How to Prevent the Flu advice just in case it might come in handy.
1. Get your rest. I mean before you getting bitten by the bug. Make sure you’re well rested – even if you’re feeling good. Then when “indispensable Barb from HR” insists on coming to work sick, your body is prepared to deal with it.
2. Keep things clean. The folks at Fred Meyers (and even my Mom in the elevator) have the right idea. Wash your hands. Don’t share stuff right now (pencils, pens, toothbrushes, etc.), and wipe down surfaces. Especially at the gym. Viruses like the flu can live on surfaces for as long as 2 hours – so good hand washing is a must.
3. Cut back on the sugar. Sugar is tough on white blood cells – the good guys of your immune system that help fight off infection. Eat clean, fresh, and healthy foods – including these immune boosters.
4. Stay hydrated. Get your drink on, but not alcohol (too much sugar). Herbal teas, broths, water. Just keep it low in sugar. One of my favorite drinks to help prevent the flu is made up of lemon, oranges, ginger and honey. The quickie recipe is:
a couple slices of Ginger (play with it until you get the taste you like)
I juice the lemon, orange and ginger in the juicer – peel and all.
I pour the juice and the pulp into a small jar, and cover it with honey (again play with it until you get the taste you like).
I put the jar in the refrigerator.
When I want some tea, I spoon 3-4 tablespoons into a tea diffuser (mine is a plastic Ball Canning Jar with holes cut in the bottom – but you could use something fancier), stick it into the tea pot, and pour the hot water over it.
It’s a great warm immune boosting drink when you’re feeling well, and it’s a life saver if you happen to get the sore throat, coughing yuckiness of the flu.
Those are my top How to Prevent the Flu tips. What are your go to strategies for not getting caught in the seasonal illness path? Please share them below.