It happens every year, the COLD & FLU season! The kids bring germs home from school and you get sick, you’ve been working too long hours and not getting enough sleep, the guy next to you on the subway sneezes and you’ve caught the bug. Sometimes, no matter how much prevention, those little buggers find you!
Lifestyle factors that can depress your immune system, alone or in combination, include:
- Eating too much sugar, particularly fructose, and too many grains. The average person is consuming about 75 grams of fructose per day, and when fructose is consumed at that level it can devastate your immune system.
- Vitamin D deficiency, as a result of insufficient sun exposure
- Not getting enough rest
- Insufficient exercise
- Using ineffective strategies to address emotional stressors
So, you get sick because of a compromised immune system. When your body’s natural defenses are not functioning the way they should be, viruses and bacteria can get in and attack. How do you keep your immune system working properly? The same way you keep all your body’s systems working correctly: by keeping the nerve pathways between your organs and your brain open and healthy. That’s what chiropractic does, by keeping your spine in alignment and the nerves in your spine un-pinched!
Regular chiropractic care can help lessen the impact of colds/flu as well as help you heal faster when you do get sick. Chiropractic care is not a cure for the common cold/flu but regular chiropractic adjustments place your body’s ability to function optimally. When the stress on the nerves are cleared, the body functions at a much higher level. This is the best form of prevention available.
Your body’s ability to function optimally can only happen if you are free of subluxations. Vertebral subluxations are misalignments in the vertebrae of your spine. They prevent proper nerve flow throughout your body and lower your natural resistance.
Your neck and back can be out of alignment for many different reasons. Muscle tension, chronic stress, a car accident, roughhousing with friends, a sports injury, a fall, any of these could be the cause. Restoring your body to proper alignment is important overall, but it can be helpful specifically in opening your lymphatic ducts so that your body can flush out harmful substances and help protect you against colds, flu and other illnesses. A non-invasive chiropractic adjustment restores proper alignment to the neck and back.
The following is a good example of the protocol for colds and flu:
- Chiropractic adjustments and care
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D
- Chicken Noodle Soup
- Stay hydrated, drink plenty of water
Chiropractic also helps you heal faster when you do get sick. Sometimes, even with a healthy spine, you might get a cold, flu, or gastrointestinal infection (“stomach flu”). You’ll be able to heal more quickly with a properly aligned spine. That’s why it’s important to come to the chiropractor when you get sick, ideally before you go see any other doctor.
When you’re starting to feel better and want to maintain your optimal health, aside from chiropractic adjustments, here are a few other suggestions:
- Exercise – Most people, when feeling under the weather, prefer curling up in front of the TV instead of exercising. However, research has shown that if you are not dizzy or extremely ill, a light walk or mild bout of exercise can help improve your well-being by breaking up mucus and releasing feel-good endorphins. Just be sure to be aware of your body and do not over-exert yourself.
- Reduce Stress – Although not all stress-provoking situations can be eliminated, it is important to filter through your life and make note of the things that cause you the greatest amount of stress. Then, evaluate the list and find ways to eliminate or alter your stressors. Practice saying “no”. Also, planning exercise and healthy meals into your daily routine can drastically help with stress management. We can help educate you on what is best for your body!
- Get Quality Sleep – Lack of sleep inhibits your ability to fight off colds. Be sure to get at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night. If you feel that you are coming down with a cold, even more sleep may be needed to rejuvenate your body.
To get some additional information or advice on how chiropractic care and nutrition can help keep you healthy, please feel free to reach out to Dr. Sahoury and his staff at Above and Beyond Holistic Wellness at 201-265-0555. Our approach is holistic and we offer a wide variety of treatment options for you.
To your health and wellness,
Dr. Roger Sahoury