Vaccine Shortage Stressing You? Here’s How to Avoid the Flu
By Debbie Mandel
The lines are long, time consuming and filled with anxious faces. People are stressed that the flu vaccine is scarce and available only for those in special need. It’s every person for himself or is it? The flu can bring out the best or worst in each of us: how we handle fear, illness, victimization, aggression or acceptance. Adversity helps us get acquainted with who we are. Do we have compassion and are we willing to give up our flu shot for another who needs it more? The vaccine scarcity gives us an opportunity to face and understand our fears more deeply and how to take care of ourselves. The answer to the flu epidemic is physical and spiritual balance. Because if we are living in balance in all that we do, we can boost our immune system, live in better health and have a sense of who we really are.
The good news is that most healthy people will recover from the flu in seven to ten days and the worst symptoms go away within four days. There are also prescription antiviral medicines: Amantadine, rimantadine, Relenza, and Tamiflu which lessen the severity of the flu and shorten its duration. In order for them to be effective you must take them within the first two days of the flu. Also our government will obtain additional vaccines from Canada and Germany and most likely will have them available by December.
For those of us who are un-vaccinated here are some suggestions to avoid getting the flu:
- Fear of the flu might be your best motivation to cut down on stress levels. Stress causes a great deal of physiological damage to your internal organs, particularly, your immune system. Situations that make you angry and aggravated are really not worth getting sick over.
- Get your rest. Sleep repairs cellular damage and keeps you balanced mentally and physically. When you are tired and weak, you are vulnerable to infections.
- If you are waiting for New Year’s Day to resolve to exercise, don’t wait; there is no better time than the present. Regular exercise kicks up the immune system. Just a brisk daily thirty minute walk will boost your immune system. The key word is regularity.
- Eat a balanced diet, especially increasing your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables. Living foods that are raw or minimally cooked are potent disease fighters. No supplement can give you what fruits and vegetables supply.
- Cut down on sugars and stimulants. Sugar knocks out the immune system for several hours and causes your insulin levels to go out of balance,
- Drink plenty of healthy fluids like water, juices or green tea to flush out toxins.
- Eat plenty of fiber to move toxins out of your colon quickly.
- Air out your home daily. An energy efficient sealed house breeds mold which undermines your immune system.
- Maintain some green houseplants to purify the air: Philodendrons, Spider plants, and Pothos.
- Wash your hands thoroughly. Don’t rub your eyes after you have shaken hands or touched germ-laden surfaces. A finger to the eye is a direct route of infectious inoculation.
Debbie Mandel, MA is the author of Turn On Your Inner Light: Fitness for Body, Mind and Soul, a stress-reduction specialist, motivational speaker, a personal trainer and mind/body lecturer. She is the host of the weekly Turn On Your Inner Light Show on WGBB 1240AM in New York City , produces a weekly wellness newsletter, and has been featured on radio/ TV and print media. To learn more visit: www.turnonyourinnerlight.com