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What Not To Do When The Flu Strikes

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Allowing the flu to run its course without interruption leaves your immune system stronger and can be the difference between improving your health and having a relapse. Natural remedies are non-invasive and healing while over-the-counter medications can lengthen the duration of illness. Do you know what not to do when the flu strikes?


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When flu strikes, it’s the virus versus your immune system. Your body fights hard against this viral invader. It fights to get you back to health. One good indication of how hard your body is fighting, and how vital you are, is how high your fever spikes. The higher the fever, the harder your body is working for you.

You Already Know What To Do When Flu Strikes – Or At Least You Think You Do

Fever is not a disease in itself – it is an integral part of the healing process. Allowing your body to fight an invader and win makes your immune system stronger than say, stopping the fever with over-the-counter medications.

Related: This Is The Real Reason You Get Colds and Flu Every Year

Natural Remedies For Getting Over The Flu

Natural remedies for getting over the flu and coming out stronger include a short fast, rest, quiet, a clean and warm bed, fresh air from an open window and plenty of liquids, but are you aware of what not to do when the flu strikes?

1. Do Not Stop A Fever

While fevers are a sign of illness, they're really an indication that something is going right, according to a study published in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology since a rise in body temperature has been proven to increase immune defense.

Think of fever as the vital powers of the body protecting the organs. When there’s an invader, your body goes to battle. While the body may appear weakened during a bout with the flu, researchers from Roswell Park Cancer Institute have found that a higher body temperature helps the immune system to work better and harder against infected cells.

Ever notice how babies run higher fevers than adults? This is because a child's immune system is new and vital and work harder against viral bugs. This vital action – this fever-- is the body’s way of getting back to health and so the greater the reactive power of the body, the higher the body's temperature is likely to rise. That being said, it is always important to remember that high fever is a show of your body’s strength not of weakness.

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2. Do Not Take Over-The-Counter Remedies

The flu is a virus that needs to run its course, and while you may believe that over-the-counter remedies are your saving grace, the inconvenient truth is, that they can interrupt your healing. Stopping a fever by dosing up on over-the-counter remedies such as Tylenol and Motrin cools the body and disrupts the body’s healing process. This can extend your healing time. What is more, medications work against the body’s processes, and during a viral battle, your body doesn’t need another thing to work against.

3. Do Not Eat Chicken Soup

Of all the healthful foods suggested to heal the flu, chicken soup is most popular. But is chicken soup really healing? The flu is a time to treat yourself gently, not fill it with fatty food. While it has become a tradition to prepare a nice hot chicken soup for when the flu strikes, the healing benefits aren’t significant. Chicken soup has an appreciable amount of fat, which is the last thing your body needs to process, especially when you are feeling ill. When the body is fasting and working to kill a virus and a fever, the digestive process stops. Physiologically this is a good thing. With the digestive system halted the body can concentrate on its healing work.Instead, you'll want to give your body nourishing fat-free liquids during this time as a form of quick nutrition. Fresh juices or a non-fat homemade vegetable broth is a better, more nourishing choice for getting nutrients as well as for rapid assimilation and absorption.

Related: Natural Remedies For Ending A Fever

4. Do Not Go To Work Sick

The flu is contagious. Although it seems the flu comes on suddenly, adults are contagious 1-2 days before getting symptoms of the flu, and up to 7 days after becoming ill. This means you can spread the influenza virus before you even know you are infected. When it comes to the flu or any virus – “The only way out is through.” The flu, like any virus, needs to run its course and you need to allow your body time to do this. Over-the-counter remedies only mask symptoms, they are not healing the body since the body works against them. There are no medals given out to workers who show up to work while they are sick. It is both dangerous to you and puts your co-workers at risk.

Work With Your Body, Not Against It

Instead of setting up a healing situation that works against the body, give the body all the things it can work with during this healing time -- water, nutrient-rich fresh juices, non-fat healing vegetable broth, warmth, some quiet time and plenty of uninterrupted rest. These natural remedies can shorten the sick time and will be leaving your immune system stronger than it was before.