It’s that time of year again: flu season. While some may think virtually nothing can be done to prevent contracting this pesky virus, a number of natural prevention strategies can help protect you and even boost your immune system. Compiled below are a few of the best ways to prevent the flu, naturally.
1. Eat a Balanced Diet
Perhaps the most valuable resource in protecting your body against viruses and infections, such as the flu, is eating a balanced diet. A diet rich in whole foods, including fresh fruits and veggies, will better equip your body and its immune system to fight off invaders. A true balanced diet typically will be free from processed foods and added/artificial sugars.
If your diet is not properly balanced, deficiencies can occur. When a deficiency occurs, the immune system is more prone to contracting infections and viruses, including the flu.
2. Get Enough Sleep
Proper sleep is crucial for your health. In fact, it is just as important as food, water, and air. During sleep, the body performs a number of vital functions, including healing itself and restoring its chemical balance. In addition, new connections are forged within the brain, allowing memories to be better retained.
It’s currently recommended that you aim for between seven and nine hours of sleep per night. Any less than this, and it will start taking a toll on your body and overall health. One of the first signs of sleep deprivation is a weakened immune system. When the immune system is not performing at full capacity, the body is left susceptible to illness, such as the flu.
3. Keep Physically Active
Physical activity strengthens the whole body, including the immune system. In addition, studies have shown exercise reduces the risk for a number of health conditions, including:
- Heart disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- High blood pressure
In fact, Dr. Mercola, renowned natural health expert, has stated, “Exercise is, without a doubt, one of the most powerful ways to improve your health.”
4. Decrease Alcohol and Tobacco Consumption
Excessive alcohol and tobacco consumption can weaken the immune system as well as negatively impact sleep habits. In addition, smoking tobacco can irritate the lining of the nose, sinuses, and lungs. This leaves the body more susceptible to infection and illness.
Studies have suggested that those who regularly smoke tobacco products tend to get the flu more often than those who don’t. In addition, when smokers get sick, they tend to have a more severe infection. Smokers also have a higher risk of dying from the flu. In fact, in the United States alone, more than 36,000 people die from the flu and resulting complications each year.
5. Take an Immune System Booster, such as CBD
One of the many health benefits of CBD is it may help boost the immune system, due to its numerous medicinal properties. Initial studies have found that CBD offers a multitude of health benefits, including:
- Antiemetic (reduces nausea and vomiting)
- Anticonvulsant (suppresses seizure activity)
- Anxiolytic (combats anxiety)
- Analgesic (relieves pain)
By incorporating a supplement such as CBD into your daily regimen, you can help prevent initial contraction of viruses, including the flu. CBD comes in many forms, including vaporizer oils, tinctures, topical balms, and more.
Additional Tips to Prevent the Spread of the Flu
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Avoid close contact with others who are sick.
- Wash your hands frequently.
- Cover your mouth and nose while coughing and sneezing.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth whenever possible.
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