Stay Healthy through the Holidays (It is Cold and Flu Season)

Don’t Want to Get Sick?
One of the biggest reasons for winter illness is lack of hydration.

Outdoor air is drier in cold weather, and heated homes are also dry. Staying hydrated in the winter keeps mucous membranes soft and moist, preventing the tiny cracks that allow viruses and bacteria to invade your bloodstream, making you sick.

How much water should you drink?
Here’s the math: Divide your weight in pounds by two. Minimally that is the number of ounces of water you should be drinking. If you exercise, take your weight and multiply by 2/3 to get the number of ounces.

Physical exercise will generally boost your immunity. A 30 to 60 minute walk most days per week is considered adequate on the exercise front. Do not over exercise however as overexercising can be as detrimental to your immunity as not enough exercise.

Consume a diet rich in vegetables and fruit. (Mayo Clinic suggests 7 to 9 servings of fruits and veggies a day!) The antioxidants they contain reduce the risk of stroke and enhance immune defense lowering the risk of infection. Phytonutrients contained in fruit and vegetables are linked to increased immunity and faster healing. Add three servings of whole grains to your vegetables and fruit every day and you should stay healthy! Nutrient-packed food choices include broccoli, red onion, blueberries, grapes, oats, barley and tea.

Research shows probiotics aid with immunity. 70% of your immune system is in your gut, so a happy gut makes for a healthy you! Good bacteria found in probiotics keep your gastro-intestinal tract low in disease-causing germs. Yogurt with live active cultures and kefir are good food sources of probiotics. Our office carries pharmaceutical grade probiotics that are more effective than yogurt or over the counter probiotics.

Many supplements claim to reduce colds and viruses. The best supplement option is a highly absorbable multivitamin/mineral once per day with 100% of the recommended daily values of vitamins A, B6, B12, C and D, and minerals chromium, copper, folic acid, selenium, calcium and zinc. (Our doctors take PhytoMulti by Metagenics which is an amazing multivitamin with phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals that is available at our office or at our online store. This supplement also protects cells.

Those who take Echinacea were about 30% less likely to get a cold. Echinacea however should not be used by anyone with an allergy to ragweed, mums, marigolds, or daisies.

The use of green tea capsules twice a day for 3 months in a study conducted in 2007 indicated that the subjects on the green tea supplements were 32% less symptomatic with 23% less illnesses lasting 2 or more days. On blood work these subjects had enhanced immune function and had no noteworthy side effects.

Already Sick? Get adjusted. Some studies suggest that your white blood cells go higher after an adjustment and this will help your body fight infection better.

Drink lots of fluids. Water, clear broth or warm lemon water are all good choices. Fluids consumed replace fluids lost during mucus production or fever. Avoid alcohol and caffeine, which can cause dehydration. Avoid sugared beverages such as soft drinks, fruit juice, as sugar depresses immune function.

Salt. A saltwater gargle comprised of 1/2 teaspoon salt dissolved in an 8-ounce glass of warm water will help with a sore throat while saline nasal drops or a Neti pot will help with nasal congestion.

Rest. Stay home from work or school if you have a fever or a bad cough or are drowsy after taking medications.

Chicken Soup. Chicken soup seems to help relieve cold and flu symptoms by reducing the inflammation of mucous linings while assisting with the movement of mucus through the nose relieving nasal congestion and limiting the time viruses are in contact with the nasal lining.

Drink Green Tea or Take Green Tea capsules. Support your immune system so you can get well faster.

In Chinese Medicine we use First Defense tea or Minor Bupleurum (XCH LifeRising)
From Orthomolecular Products we advocate Viracid (contains Echinacea) at the first sign of a cold.
Shop these products with JC287 at our store
Warm, Moist Air. Keep your room warm and use a humidifier or vaporizer to help moisten the air.

Wishing you a happy, healthy holiday!
The Staff and Doctors at Crosby Chiropractic Centre