In Public Health we focus on preventing disease and limiting the spread of disease. This is especially true for viral infections.
The common cold costs Americans about $40 Billion a year in lost work, doctor visits and remedies. Although these are some of the most common illnesses, they are also the easiest to prevent. Each person needs to take the initiatives so that Americans as a collective can see fewer sick days.
Here is how you do it:
1: Wash your hands. Most people don’t wash their hands correctly. All it takes is HOT water and soap, scrub for 30 seconds and rinse. Dry with clean towels each time.
2: Stay home if you get sick, and keep sick kids home. This is a critical step for us all to adhere to in order to prevent the spread of illness. Many colds and flu are spread from coughing and sneezing which sends germs airborne. Stay home for the first 3 days of a virus especially as those are your most contagious days. Always stay home if you have a fever.
3: Kill Germs. Don’t use hand sanitizers or cleaners with harsh chemicals. Try natural agents like vinegar, hydrogen peroxide and essential oils. A simple hand sanitizer can be made in about 2 minutes with just a couple of these ingredients.
4: Increase your Vitamin D consumption. This is critical for immune health. You can get it from fatty fish and eggs, sunbathing, or supplement. Shoot for 1000IU daily if you don’t see the sun or eat those foods.
5: Increase your Vitamin C intake. Vitamin C is another great nutrient easily found in fresh produce and increases immunity.
6: Reduce or eliminate sugar from your diet. Sugar immobilizes your immune functions for several hours and you need your fighters! No sugar.
7: Don’t take antibiotics unless absolutely necessary. Try natural fighters first like essential oils, herbs such as olive leaf.
8: Exercise daily to prevent illness, rest if you feel tired. Pushing yourself too much too often can exhaust your adrenals and thereby reduce immune functions.
9: Take Probiotics daily to bolster guy health, the gut holds 75% of your immune power.
10: Nothing overshadows the power of rest, the ultimate remedy. Get enough rest BEFORE you get sick as a preventative measure. Rest as much as possible if you do get sick. This is the time the body naturally heals and repairs itself.
Nicole Carter, MEd, CHES is a Certified Health Education Specialist with a Masters Degree in Public Health and 15 years of experience writing, speaking and teaching holistic health and wellness practices. Get more ideas on how to live healthy at www.healthywithnicole.com