Wellness During Flu Season in Berkeley
By Julie A. Soloduka
March 9, 2018
Why is there a “Flu Season”?
Every year around winter time, the incidence of the flu in Berkeley is higher than normal. During flu season, the Influenza virus is one of the top reasons for hospitalization and death, especially in children. There are a few reasons why this may happen.
One of the contributing factors is the cooler temperature of the air. The influenza virus replicates and spreads more effectively when it’s cold. The viral particle is more stable in cool and dry air as opposed to humid air. This ensures that it can spread more readily from person to person.
Another possible factor contributing to the heightened incidence of the flu is the concept of crowding. In the wintertime, people tend to stay indoors more often due to the cold temperatures outside. As more people gather inside in higher numbers, the chances of spreading the influenza virus from person to person increases.
The concept of crowding holds especially true for children in school. They tend to stay indoors more in the winter months, working on crafts and projects rather than playing outside. Children are notorious hosts for the influenza virus, and its spread occurs readily in schools.
With all this worrisome information going around, you’ll be glad to hear there is something you can do to improve your chances of remaining healthy this flu season.
How to Keep Your Body and Immune System in Berkeley in Top Shape
For all the factors we can’t control, there are just as many factors we can control at The Good Life Chiropractic when it comes to our wellness during flu season. The following are some great ways to stay healthy and ensure your body can fight off anything that comes its way.
The first step to staying healthy is having a good, well-rounded diet. This holds especially true during flu season. You have to ensure that you’re consuming foods from all 4 food groups, especially fruits and vegetables. Foods to make sure you’re including in your diet include citrus fruits such as oranges, and green vegetables such as broccoli and spinach- all which have a high concentration of vitamins and minerals that can assist in strengthening your immune system. You may also consider including superfoods such as ginger, garlic, or turmeric, which are said to have anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties.
In addition to consuming healthy foods to keep your immune system in top shape, you must also ensure you are drinking enough water. The FDA recommends that both men and women consume approximately 12 cups of water per day. Drinking an adequate amount of water will ensure that you can continuously flush out toxins from your body, and will leave you feeling refreshed and energized.
When diet alone is not enough, you may introduce supplements into your diet. They are called supplements for a reason - they are not supposed to replace your diet, they are supposed to add to it. Focus on starting to incorporate supplements such as Vitamins C (an immune booster), B6 (vital in biochemical reactions of the immune system), and E (a powerful antioxidant that fights off infection). Adding supplements to your diet can significantly decrease your chances of getting sick.
A simple yet sometimes overlooked way to stay well during flu season is practicing proper hygiene. Something as simple as washing your hands frequently (before and after meals, after coughing or sneezing, after shaking someone’s hand, etc.) can greatly reduce the risk of transmitting disease. In addition, ensure to regularly disinfect household surfaces that are frequently used by children - the flu virus in particular can live on surfaces for up to 24 hours!
One of the best ways to ensure your body is working at its best is by getting checked regularly by your chiropractor at The Good Life Chiropractic in Berkeley. Spinal manipulations relieve nerve interference that may be present in your spine - if a nerve is interfered, the function of the area of the body supplied by the nerve may be negatively affected. As you know, nerves supply everything in your body including organs that release antibodies and hormones - this means that if your spine is out of line, it can potentially alter your body’s unique chemistry and hinder the function of your immune system. An altered immune system may not be able to fight off bacteria or viruses as effectively, making you more susceptible to disease.
Even if you are not feeling pain or symptoms of illness, make sure you are regularly visiting your chiropractor to ensure your spine is in line and all nerves in your body are functioning optimally. This, along with the other suggestions above, will assist you in creating an internal powerhouse able to fight off anything that comes its way.
“While other professions are concerned with changing the environment to suit the weakened body, chiropractic is concerned with strengthening the body to suit the environment.”
-Dr. B.J. Palmer, DC
- Commins, J. (2017, October 03). USDA Recommended Daily Water Intake. Retrieved February 28, 2018, from https://www.livestrong.com/article/355482-usda-recommended-daily-water-intake/
- FLEMING, D. M., & ELLIOT, A. J. (2008). Lessons from 40 years’ surveillance of influenza in England and Wales. Epidemiology and Infection, 136(7), 866–875. http://doi.org/10.1017/S0950268807009910
- How long do bacteria and viruses live outside the body? (n.d.). Retrieved February 28, 2018, from https://www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/how-long-do-bacteria-and-viruses-live-outside-the-body.aspx
- Kolata, G. (2007, December 04). Study Shows Why the Flu Likes Winter. Retrieved February 19, 2018, from http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/05/health/research/05flu.html
- Rondberg, T. A. (2015). Chiropractic first: the fastest growing healthcare choice--before drugs or surgery. Chandler, AZ: Chiropractic Journal.
- Team, H. A. (2016, April 13). 3 Vitamins That Are Best for Boosting Your Immunity. Retrieved February 28, 2018, from https://health.clevelandclinic.org/2016/01/3-vitamins-best-boosting-immunity/
- The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 52, Issue 3, 1 September 1990, Pages 557–563, https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/52.3.557
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