The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is predicting a severe flu season this winter, due to a mutation to one of the active flu strains. You’ve probably seen proof of the flu popping up near you through local news reports or status updates from your Facebook friends. In our city, an elementary school had to close down in December when nearly 25% of students were infected with the flu virus.
While the medical world is working on developing cures for cold and flu viruses, no remedies currently exist. In the meantime, DHHS recommends flu vaccinations for everyone who can tolerate them. In addition, webmd.com recommends several preventive measures you can put in place to stay healthy. The article 8 Natural Tips to Help Prevent a Cold offers some great, simple ideas to help avoid illnesses in the first place. In addition to washing your hands frequently and keeping your hands away from your face, the article also recommends you:
- Eat foods containing phytochemicals – Phytochemicals are naturally-occurring, beneficial chemicals found in plant-based foods, including fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes. Research indicates that phytochemicals have a positive impact on your health, doing everything from boosting your immune system to fighting free radicals in your body and even potentially fighting certain types of cancer.
- Exercise regularly to transfer more oxygen to your blood and make your body sweat out toxins – If you are a regular sauna user, chances are you are already reaping the immune-boosting benefits of improved circulation and detoxification. What you might not know is that Sunlighten is always striving to take these benefits to the next level. Our saunas have been shown to mirror the benefits of a passive cardio workout, increasing your blood flow just as if you were exercising.1 Our far infrared heat has also been shown to generate sweat with a toxin ratio of nearly 20% (as compared to a 3% toxin ratio for other saunas). It’s a great way to reap the benefits of a workout, even on days you can’t make it to the gym.
- Relax to “rev up your immune system” – The WebMD article cites evidence that relaxing helps boost your immune system. We couldn’t agree more. The American Institute of Stress estimates that 75% to 90% of all visits to primary care physicians are for stress-related problems. Chronic stress may affect your health, causing increased blood pressure, weight gain and, yes, even weakening of the immune system. Fortunately, Sunlighten infrared saunas can help reduce blood pressure, and lower cortisol levels (cortisol is directly linked to the body’s response to stress), giving your body the tools it needs to truly relax. We encourage you to learn more about our SO Sound Acoustic Resonance Therapy to add the healing benefits of sound and vibration to your relaxing sauna experience.
Whatever methods you choose to keep colds and flu at bay, here’s to well-functioning immune systems in 2015. We wish you a healthy winter season!
1 Dr. Masakazu Imamura, MD, et al. Repeated Thermal Therapy Improves Impaired Vascular Endothelial Function in Patients With Coronary Risk Factors. Vol. 38, No. 4, 2001. Journal of American College of Cardiology: pp 1083-1088.
*image: “Model of influenza virus” – Smithsonian Museum of Natural History – 2012-05-17 by Tim Evanson.