Drink Up to Prevent Colds and Flu
This time of year reminders of cold and flu season are everywhere. Flu shots are offered in many offices, in the grocery store, and at pharmacies. In the office, every sniffle is magnified. While it is never a good time to get sick, being sidelined seems even worse once the holiday season kicks off.
You can’t protect yourself from all germs but you can do a few things to minimize your chances of getting sick. Some basic ideas that really work: wash your hands often, get the sleep you need – for me that means 8 hours, and drink more filtered water. Staying hydrated lets your body circulate blood more freely, allowing flu-and-cold-fighting white blood cells better fight off viruses. The common recommendation is eight glasses of water a day. In cold and flu season I up my water intake to at least 10 glasses a day – interspersed with an occasional green juice that is packed with lots of healthy veg. Doctors will tell you, drinking more fluids may boost immune system function, helping you fight off illness. Should go without saying, but filter water before you drink it. If better health is your end game, start with the healthiest water possible.
If all your best efforts aren’t enough and you do catch a cold or get the flu, hydration becomes extremely important. When you are sick, you need to increase your water intake to replace fluids lost to congestion, fever and vomiting. Hydration keeps your nose and throat from feeling dry, and will loosen any mucus. Increasing fluids can also prevent dehydration, which makes a bad illness considerably worse.
Drinking water is one of the easiest things you can do to stay healthy during cold and flu season.