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At-Home Immune Boosters: Minimize Your Chances Of A Cold Or Flu

| February 03, 2011, 11:34 AM | 1 Comment

The best offense against a cold or flu is a good defense.  Once you catch a cold or flu there isn’t much choice except to let it run its course.  Over the counter cold and flu remedies can alleviate symptoms but its your body that is doing the work fighting off the bug, not the Theraflu.  So besides washing your hands and staying away from sick people what else can you do to stay healthy during cold and flu season?  Here are a few tips from the perspective of Chinese Medicine which are easy to follow.

  1. Stay Warm.  Protecting your body from cold will help you fight off any bugs you are exposed to.  This means wearing a scarf and keeping your neck covered from drafts and wind.  Wear multiple layers and don’t go out without a coat and hat.  Also don’t go outside with wet hair!
  2. Get enough sleep. Proper rest is essential for good health regardless, especially to keep your immune system strong.
  3. Consume warm foods and liquids. Winter is not the time to indulge in salads or ice water.  Lettuce is not in season during Maryland’s winter and that’s not an accident.  Cook your vegetables and trade your salad for a warm bowl of soup instead.  Instead of ice water, room temperature water or even hot herbal tea is best.  This is especially true for people who already feel cold to begin with.  My favorite winter food is a hot bowl of Vietnamese noodle soup, or pho from Saigon Palace in Edgewater.
  4. Exercise. Its the best way to keep the energy flowing in the body as well as warming it up with a good sweat.  Avoid using a fan during exercise because once you are sweating a cold breeze can make you cold.  Take off sweaty clothes right away after exercising. If you can’t shower immediately and you sweat a lot consider another set of clothes and socks to change into after exercising.

And of course regular acupuncture can help boost your immune system to prevent colds and flu especially if you tend to get sick multiple times during the winter.  Many times getting acupuncture in the first 24-48 hours that you start to feel run down can avoid a cold from setting in.

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About the Author - Meaghan Massella Walker, M.Ac, L.Ac

Edgewater Acupuncture provides acupuncture treatments on a sliding scale of $15-$35 with a one time $10 paperwork fee for new patients. Acupuncture is for everyone. It’s most effective when received frequently and regularly. This is the reason behind Edgewater Acupuncture’s prices — accessible, simple, effective healthcare for you and your family. This accessibility allows you to come as often as necessary for you to get healthy and stay healthy. You decide what you pay. It’s that simple.

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  1. There is no verifiable, reproducible, beyond-the-placebo-effect evidence that acupuncture prevents or treats a cold or the flu.
    Verifiable, reproducible, and beyond-the-placebo-effect prevention of the cold or the flu include hand washing, immunizations, and social distancing.

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