While we may wish to skip it each year, flu season is upon us. While there's no way to guarantee you and your family will escape the flu this year, there are some ways you can prepare yourself and your home to keep you well as season long.
1. Get a flu shot.
This should be your No. 1 priority this season to help protect yourself against the flu. The vaccine is especially important for those diagnosed with medical conditions, the elderly and young children -- these groups could have a weak or compromised immune system.
2. Stock up on herbs.
Three of the herbal extracts we recommend having on hand are olive leaf, echinacea and elderberry. Olive leaf has natural antibiotic properties and echinacea and elderberry can also strengthen the immune system to build up the body's defenses.
3. Cook antioxidant-rich foods.
Make sure your diet is colorful and made up of whole foods that do more for you than just taste good. The more vibrant the color, the better, so shop the rainbow and lay off the processed junk or fast food. Taking a daily multivitamin can also reinforce your better eating habits.
4. Keep an electrolyte supplement on hand.
If you should find yourself sick, staying hydrated is essential to help lower and fever and prevent you from getting even sicker due to dehydration. Just add an electrolyte supplement to water and keep on drinking. Make sure to stay hydrated each and every day, sick or not.
5. Support your immune system.
Two of the most important nutrients for a strong immune system are vitamin C and zinc. Vitamin C is an antioxidant found in citrus fruits as well as dark, leafy green vegetables. Zinc is an essential trace mineral that also plays a crucial role in the functioning of the immune system. Make sure both are included in your multivitamin to cover your bases.
6. Get your rest.
Sleep is invaluable to the strength of your body's defenses against illness. When we don't get enough rest, the immune system can be compromised, leaving the body more susceptible to illness. Follow these suggestions to get the sleep you need each night.
7. Protect yourself with proper hygiene.
Wash your hands. Wash your hands. Wash your hands. Carrying some hand sanitizer with you can't hurt either, especially if you take public transportation.
8. Don't neglect your exercise routine.
Exercising regularly also strengthens the body's immune system in addition to weight management and building strength. As the weather gets colder, take steps like these to switch up your routine so you don't miss a day.
9. Maintain a tidy house.
Every time we enter our homes we bring in dirt and germs from our office, our children's school, the grocery store and everywhere else we go. Keep the surfaces you touch most and prepare food on as clean as possible to keep you and your family safe from the flu.
10. Have epsom salts in your medicine cabinet.
Soaking in a epsom salt bath can be naturally detoxifying. If you should contract the flu, a bath may also help with any aches and pains -- just don't make the water too hot and stay hydrated.
Keep these 10 tips in mind to help you stay prepared throughout flu season. Check back later for more of the latest health news and information.