Over the last few weeks, I have heard of dozens of patients, family members and friends beat down by the stomach flu. It seems this unwanted guest likes to visit unsuspecting people in the middle of the night and cause severe vomiting and diarrhea. After about 12-24 hours it moves on to its next victim. Definitely not fun. I don’t know anyone that likes the stomach flu…even with the pre-holiday weight loss associated with it.
So what are some ways you can try and prevent yourself from getting this “bug in the night”. I’ll share some with you.
- Get plenty of rest. Not sleeping well at night, burning the midnight oil and staying up too late wrapping those last minute gifts is a sure fire way to lower your immune system, increase inflammation and increase your risk of getting sick. If you feel like you need a nap…take one. Stay rested and recover.
- Strengthen the good guys. Take a high dose probiotic every single day. Increase the levels you normally take when you are going to be around those that may be harboring the contagious critters. One day last week I actually took a bottle of Ultra Flora Spectrum and consumed the whole bottle throughout that day. For the past week I have been taking high doses of probiotics to add more good gut bacteria and improve gut function. Since the majority of your immune system resides in your gut, it’s a good idea to increase the good guys by taking high quality probiotics.
- Boost your immune system. The way I personally go about doing this is with increasing my levels of vitamin C and taking a blend of mushroom extracts with immune-boosting abilities. I like to take 4-12 grams of a buffered vitamin C (Ultra Potent C) and dose 3 tablets 3-4 times daily of the mushroom extracts (Immucore). This high dosing is very safe for the few weeks that I am choosing to boost my immune system.
- Stay hydrated. Make sure to drink 1/2 your weight in ounces of water each day. This helps with cellular motility. Dehydration has a negative effect on health, immune system and your gut.
- Manage your stress. At the end of the year everyone is trying to complete their deadlines and job tasks. This increased level of stress can suppress your immune system. Manage your stress by creating daily to-do lists and choosing the most important things that need to get done.
- Choose life-promoting and immune enhancing foods. Avoid sugar, white flour and refined carbohydrates. These are catalysts that feed infection. Choose good sources of protein (medical foods, organic chicken, turkey, wild caught fish, or wild game), vegetables (every color every day) and healthy nuts/seeds.
These ideas are not a guarantee that you won’t get sick, but it does reduce your risk…and in the unfortunate event you do get sick…may reduce the time you suffer.
So what do you do if you are struck down with vomiting and diarrhea?
I think the tips mentioned above are important in recovery as well. The probiotics are especially important to heal from the gut inflammation. A couple other things that are really helpful are…
- Ultra InflamX 360 Plus – this medical food will provide high quality protein and support nutrients to decrease gut inflammation associated with post-sickness recovery. This is very important to re-establish the critical gut membrane that is damaged after illness.
- Endura – this is a rehydration drink typically used by athletes but contains important electrolytes. This is a great tasting powder than can be mixed with water and will help rebalance fluids after losing through vomiting and diarrhea.
I hope everyone stays well through the holiday season and all next year. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave below.