This is a great article! I have added my own comments to it (in red). Our family has been following these recommendations along with others for several years now. Although both my husband and I work with the public all day everyday, we never get the flu! And, if we feel the onset of a cold coming on, we beat it - naturally - within a few days. No missed work or doctor visits (two expenses that most people can not afford!) Nolan has also never been sick, even though he is also around people everyday and in a daycare often. Staying healthy is not because of "luck" or "good genes". It is because you take an active role in your health and make proper lifestyle choices. Educate and empower.
The following message was written by Dr. Vinay Goyal is an MBBS,DRM,DNB (Intensivist and Thyroid specialist), having clinical experience of over 20 years. He has worked in institutions like Hinduja Hospital , Bombay Hospital , Saifee Hospital , Tata Memorial, etc. Presently, he is heading our Nuclear Medicine Department and Thyroid clinic at Riddhivinayak Cardiac and Critical Centre, Malad (W):
The only portals of entry are the nostrils and mouth/throat. In a global epidemic of this nature, it's almost impossible not coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions. Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is. While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps, not fully highlighted in most official communications, can be practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu): 1. Frequent hand-washing (well highlighted in all official communications). Remember regular soap and warm water for 60 sec is all it takes. Don't over do it with the "antibacterial" soaps or wipes/hand sanitizers. They dry out your skin, causing microscopic cracks in the skin for bacteria to enter the body. They also kill the "good" bacteria on your skin that we need to stay well. 2. "Hands-off-the-face" approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of face (unless you want to eat, bathe or slap). 3. *Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use Listerine if you don't trust salt). *H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one. Don't underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful preventative method. You can also gargle with warm water and a drop of Tea Tree oil - a natural anti-bacterial product. 4. Similar to 3 above, *clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. *Not everybody may be good at using a Neti pot, but *blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton swabs dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population.* A Neti Pot costs about $10.00 - well worth it and easy to use! 5. *Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C. *If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption. On a side note, you should always be eating nutrient-dense food to keep immune system healthy. Avoid sugars, or anything with a lot of sugar in it. It will suppress your immune system even more! Especially when you are getting sick, load up of fresh, raw greens, beets, carrots, berries. 6. *Drink as much of warm liquids (tea, coffee, etc) as you can - sans sugar! *Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm. Hot water with a bit of lemon will ward off bacteria and soothe the throat. Six simple steps to stay healthy!
On top of that - get plenty of sleep, de-stress (yoga does wonders!), eat well ( a green smoothie a day will keep the flu away!), exercise everyday and get regular chiropractic adjustments, especially if you feel a cold coming on. Remember, the nervous system controls everything in the body; every cell, muscle, tissue and organ, including the immune system. Chiropractors are expects of the nervous system, which is housed in the spine...eat well, move well, think well...
Our family does not get the flu shot. We have not done that for the past 15+ years. I personally think it is a waste of time, money and actually does more harm then good. I'm sure the CDC does their best, but there are over 600 strains of the flu and they can only put what they suspect will be the top few strains for that year in the vaccine. Are vaccines really safe? Is the exposure to mercury, aluminum and other harmful chemicals really worth not getting the flu (which you probably will get anyway, even if you DO get the vaccine, but DON'T follow the above advice!) It is OK to get sick - you actually build up your immune system that way.