Taking Charge of Your Health

hi everyone my name is dr. Martinez and
I’m a naturopathic doctor at PhysioChiroWellness today i’m going to be talking about colds and flus because it’s the season the season is starting and many people are asking me what we can do as naturopathic doctors for you so first let’s start talking about how to differentiate between a cold or a flu so coals are typically caused by about over 200 types of viruses typically they’re called rhino viruses and also the onset tends to be slow compared to
what we may see for a flu usually there is no fever
associated cough will be either absent or it can be mild we normally would see
symptoms such as a sore throat runny nose sneezing usually there is no
headaches and usually we don’t see body aches or fatigue if we do it might be
mild a flu on the other hand is caused by the influenza virus it’s a whole
family of them so it’s not just one but a variety of them the onset tends to be
quite sudden there’s usually a fever involved there is significant cough as
well normally we might not see a sore throat
usually no runny nose and mild it sneezing as well typically people will
feel a headache significant body aches and also significantly fatigue overall
both of them are caused by viruses and the naturopathic approach would be very
similar for both of them how do we prevent infections that’s usually the
best way to go and there are many things that can be done starting with lifestyle habits so number one washing your hands
and the standard is to web your hands dispense the soap lather and scrub for
about 20 seconds then you rinse for 10 seconds he would turn off the tap dry
your hands and of course remember to wash between your fingers and under your
nails the next habit that you can start to implement for the prevention of a
cold or flu is what we call nasal irrigation basically this is just
rinsing away any virus that might have been in contact with the mucous
membranes of your nose and therefore will stop the growth of the virus this
month maintains healthy bacteria in your nasal passages as well and also it can
help to get rid of any excess mucus from your sinuses and thus reducing
inflammation this is particularly helpful for people who tend to get sick
regularly and also people who may have asked my allergies and chronic sinusitis
as well you would be using a water and salt solution for this and usually they
are already bought as a mixture it’s called saline solution the next
preventative measure is diet that’s very important so you want to limit your
sugar intake your alcohol intake as well we know that these can reduce the
activity of white blood cells which are involved in fighting infections
something else that you can do is increase garlic and onions you
definitely want to focus on a Whole Foods diet and that will include
brightly colored fruits and vegetables high quality proteins so that would
include chicken turkey fish some red meats as well eggs are also good sources
of protein and of course you also want to focus on healthy fats and that can
include nuts and seeds avocados extra virgin olive oil extra virgin coconut
oil and some nut butters as well romantic food such as kimchi sauerkraut
kombucha kefir can also be a benefit and bone broth I’m a huge fan of that it’s
very rich in minerals vitamins and also a source of collagen another important
measure is to focus on your stress so you if you feel like you tend to have a
high moderate to high stress levels in your life consider seeing a naturopath
to help you with some stress management strategies the stress hormones cortisol
and adrenaline the surprised the immune system by lowering the infection killing
white blood cells in your body and so you may have noticed that the struttin
the more stress you are the more often that you may be getting sick so for this
usually a naturopathic doctor might focus on acupuncture treatments to help
you with your stress and also some herbs that we call adaptogens that are great
support for stressful stressful times another huge practice that you can
implement is exercise there is great evidence that exercise increases the
levels of white blood cells which helps fight infections this is very well
documented and most people will say that exercise is the best medicine for many
many conditions we also know that it decreases recovery time it can prevent
infections and it’s also very inexpensive because you can just do some
exercise at home so now to more specific nutrients that we may use for prevention
of colds and flus so one of the main ones is vitamin A it can increase white
blood cell function which again these are the cells that help to fight
infections and it also may have some antiviral activity vitamin C also has
antiviral activity it also increases the activity of the white blood cells and it
improve the integrity of the mucous membranes
that can be our nose or sinuses our throat so it’s a good one to include in
your daily routine and it also decreases the severity and duration of symptoms
vitamin E is another good one it improves immune response zinc is also
a great mineral to include it has antiviral activity and it in decreases
severity and duration of symptoms and selenium is another good one it enhances
your immune response sleep is very important and in most cases ignored or
undervalued during deep sleep we release immune enhancing compounds so just for
that reason alone it’s something that is a must for prevention and for the
treatment of colds and flus low-quality or inadequate sleep is associated with
an increased frequency severity and duration of common infections so what
happens if you do get a cold or a flu what can we offer as naturopathic
doctors so first we would focus on a very simple diet so avoiding sugar
increase your fluid intake and that can include water herbal teas or broth
raw garlic is also quite helpful for halting the symptoms and also one of the
things that your naturopath might recommend is to reduce or avoid dairy
consumption some of our favorite herbs for treating colds and flus include
echinacea it reduces the severity and the duration of symptoms it’s well
researched for its ability to inhibit the influenza virus from growing and it
also comes in many forms so you can buy it as a lozenge as a throat spray as a
tincture as a tea there’s various forms of echinacea another favorite is elder
flower or elderberry that one in heute enhances the immune system and the
body’s ability to produce a fever and it’s also high in vitamin C which we
discussed earlier I’m also a huge fan of slippery elm this one I prefer it in a
lozenge form for sore throats or in a tea as well another favorite is steam
inhalations this is basically where you will be perhaps boiling a pot of water
to a point where there’s steam coming out of it and you would come as close as
you can in a safe manner without burning yourself and maybe even putting a cover
around your face to retain the vapors but before you do so you may add some
essential oils to that water so that the vapors are released and you can inhale
them deeply when you come close to it this can help reduce inflammation in
your sinuses it can help clear mucus and some of my favorite antiviral and immune
boosting essential oils include time eucalyptus peppermint lavender and
rosemary make sure that if you are going to try these essential oils you check
that they are in fact an essential oil and not a synthetic blend of oils with
synthetic fragrances it will say on the label that it’s an essential oil there’s
many that might be well-crafted as well or organic so there’s a wide variety now
available at good health food stores sweated out it’s also a common practice
of naturopath so we usually may recommend a patient to have a hot shower
or a bath to cover up in many layers as well to go to a sauna or a jacuzzi and
sweat mimics the body’s natural immune response of a fever so that activates
the immune system and it kills viruses we also of course recommend rest so take
a day off it will reduce transmission or actions it allows the immune system to
access enough energy to efficiently function and heal so some of those
specific products that I tend to use quite a bit in my practice are I’m going
to be listing them I just want to clarify that I have no affiliation to
any of these companies and also the dosing my very based case by case
so the deep immune it’s by st. Francis herbal form they make an adult version
and a child version this product I tend to use for prevention of colds and flus
especially for kids who tend to get sick frequently during the cold and flu
season you can also use it to treat a cold or a
flu but what I’ve found is that it works the best as prevent as a preventative
measure the next product that is a huge favorite and also always at my home is a
tea called throat coat by traditional medicinals as the name suggests
specifically for when you have a very sore throat it helps to soothe the
lining of the throat and gives you some relief immediately actually it also has
some depending on the type of blend that you get it might have some antiviral
herbs such as echinacea or licorice so for that reason it can also be quite
helpful anything by a Vogel in there at canna forest line is great they make
tinctures they make hot tea blends Lawson jizz a spray and these ones would
be for any of the typical cold and flu symptom
I’m also a fan of Stowe DeLand Cora’s Auliya by Boren total is a cough syrup
they also have a baby version in Korres Auliya is for common cold symptoms such
as runny nose I love our six by dr. reck leg this is a homeopathic blend and this
one is for your typical flu symptoms so fever body aches
fatigue sneezing it’s quite great for that especially at the onset of the
symptoms another great coffee product is called
drosera Plex by onda so I’m also a huge fan of using homeopathic remedies that
are chosen based on the particular symptoms of the patient so that can give
you quite relief quite fast and it can just improve your overall symptoms to
get a homeopathic remedy chosen specifically for your symptoms I
recommend that you see me or any of our other naturopathic doctors at PhysioChiroWellness okay if you have any questions feel free to email us you can
call us and now we also have a chat function in our website that you can use
and one of our receptionists will be able to answer your questions

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