Flu season is here! Are you prepared?

Keeping your immune system as a healthy as possible is key to fending off nasty germs that can leave you down for the count. Being mindful of what you touch, eat and do can go a long way in reducing your risk of contracting the flu. Here are a few tips:

1. Reduce your sugar intake. A diet that is high in sugary or processed foods depresses the immune system cells that normally attack bacteria. A sugary drink can impede the function of the immune system for hours, creating a perfect opportunity for invaders to attack. Cut down on foods that lead to inflammation like white flour, rice and pasta. Incorporate into your diet lots of vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, yogurt with probiotics, as well as fruits.

2. Beef up your natural defenses with natural, plant-based supplements. Pure, high quality supplements, like Young Living’s Inner Defense, provide essential oils like oregano, thyme, lemon, clove and eucalyptus that are rich in thymol, carvacrol, and eugenol which provide immune support. Inner Defense helps to ward off yeast and fungus and has the added benefit of promoting healthy respiratory function.

3. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water. Avoid antibacterial hand sanitizers which often contain dangerous chemicals like triclosan and triclocarban. Be diligent about touching door handles, toilet seats, telephones and other surfaces. Use tissue to open doors, turn on lights and for any other surfaces that are used by the public. At home, clean these areas frequently. Young Living’s Thieves line offers safe, natural and effective hand washes, personal care and cleaning products to deep clean without harmful chemicals.

4. Add some spice to your life. Ginger, garlic and curcumin help enhance the body’s immune system so that it is better able to handle infections.

5. Make your environment more scentual. Diffusing high quality essential oils in your home or office is not only pleasing to the senses, but can help weaken microorganisms that trigger infections. Use public transportation? Dab a blend of oils on your scarf, or on the neck of a sweater or jacket and pull up around your nose and mouth for an impromptu, on-the-go diffuser.

6. Get solid ZZZs – studies show that lack of quality sleep suppresses the immune system function, decreasing the body’s ability to fight off colds or infections. Aim for eight hours each night. Try diffusing your favorite essential oil like lavender to create a peaceful atmosphere before bedtime.

7. Visit your chiropractor — Misaligned vertebrae put stress on nerves and impacts the nervous system, impeding the body’s natural response to fight off germs. Routine chiropractic care can help keep the spine aligned and the nervous system intact and able to function at its best.

Come in for a visit. We can review your lifestyle habits and recommend ways to improve your choices to boost your health and reduce your chance of infection with the flu or other viruses. 631.265.1223.