Is There Anything I Can Eat to Prevent Flu During This Time of Year?
It’s here now… flu season. Radical changes in temperature and weather, holidays (starting with Halloween), the stress of family visits and eating or drinking too much… and being exposed to all the people who are carrying the flu viruses from the flu shots, all lower our body’s resistance and increase our chances for the flu.
There are foods that you can eat that will help you to increase your natural resistance to the flu.
• Use garlic in your cooking. To get the benefits from the garlic you must crush the garlic first. Research indicates that garlic increases your resistance to infection
• Yogurt and other fermented products are natural probiotics that increase your natural immunity.
• Foods with high vitamin C help the immune system. Foods with the highest vitamin C include kale, broccoli and berries. (all are higher than oranges)
• Meats and nuts contain high zinc which is needed for optimum immune function
Are There Supplements That I Can Use That Will Ward Off Viral Infections?
There are a number of nutrients and herbs that have been demonstrated to
have clinical efficacy in up-regulating your immune system so you don’t get the flu in the first place. The most effective are:
• Echinacea research has shown that the alkylamides from the roots help strengthen and support the immune system by optimizing the function of white blood cells. With Echinacea the benefits come from ongoing use, it can’t be used as a last ditch method to treat symptoms.
• Zinc is needed to make healthy white blood cells and activate T-cells to fight viruses.
• Probiotics will enhance the balance of gut flora. Often times the first exposure to viruses may begin in the gut.
• Vitamin D receptors are found on both B cells and T cells. Vitamin D helps to modulate your immune response
• St. John’s Wort is an herb that has been shown to have antiviral effects on enveloped viruses such as influenza and herpes. Ebola is also an envelope virus.