5 Ways to Stay Healthy for Cold and Flu Season
It’s cold and flu season again!
As an acupuncturist I’m always working to make sure that people are staying health and getting better quickly. Let me give you a couple quick tips to ensure you stay strong and energized.
It is important to remember that bacteria and viruses aren’t on vacation through the summer. They are always there. So why now? Autumn is one of the most beautiful seasons in Portland. The air is cool, the leaves are changing, the kids are back in school. It is also those changes that make us more prone to getting sick.
The new season brings cool air and we switch on the furnace after a summer of collecting dust. Change causes stress. Maybe it is a new school year, holidays, or maybe just sad to see the summer go. Another big contributor is everyone is coming back from (hopefully) fabulous summer vacations and with them come a variety of virus and bacteria.
So what do you do? Hide away for 6 months?
Here’s where the science of acupuncture and Chinese medicine with a touch of common sense can help.
#1: Wash your hands. And wash your kids hands. You don’t have to be obsessive, but it is important to be clean. Hand sanitizers are helpful and effective.
#2: Be mindful of your diet. Keep your immune system strong. Add healthy foods and avoid junk food. This is important even for people that do not have problematic blood sugar issues. Everyone can keep their inflammation lower and help their immune system by avoiding refine sugars and simple carbohydrates. I hope not to disappoint, but alcohol is a sugar.
A couple things you can add to your routine include a cup of ginger tea in the mornings. Instead of an extra cup of coffee, try a vitamin drink. At the clinic we offer an effervescent vitamin drink mix “Energy Formula” to help people find some of that much needed energy.
#3: Take probiotics! Everyone knows about antibiotics. Did you know they are over prescribed and can actually put you at risk now and in the future? Try a course of probiotics instead. The ones you buy at the grocery store don’t survive the journey through your stomach. Come on in to the clinic to pick up an effective probiotic that is laboratory tested to ensure that the probiotics make it to their destination!
#4 Keep the air in you home clean. Change the filter on your furnace. If you have forced air heat, this is crucial. I recommend buying the highest quality filter available. There are several different rating systems depending upon the store and brand that you buy. Buy the highest rated air filter for dust and allergens.
#5 Schedule an acupuncture appointment. Acupuncture, moxabustion and Chinese herbs BOOST your immune system so you stay healthy. If you get sick, make an appointment quick. We can dramatically shorten and soften the symptoms of getting a cold or flu. Chinese herbs help you as a decongestant, stop your cough, and they are natural forms of antibiotics and antivirals.
It doesn’t stop there! Acupuncture helps reduce stress hormones! Stress burdens all systems of the body including the immune system. Get your tune up now and before the busy holiday season.
#6 (BONUS) Did your mom every yell at you to put on a jacket? Yes? Well, she was right. Keep warm. Summer is over. Avoid the chill in the air. That way you will keep your immune system strong AND reduce your risk of neck, shoulder and back pain.
Wishing you all a healthy autumn!
John Rybak Portland Acupuncturist The WellBridge Clinic (503) 544-9611 Find us on Facebook
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