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Massage for Cold and Flu Season

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Happy belated Fall Equinox everyone! School is back in session and cold and flu season has arrived. As we enter the holiday season (Costco has Christmas decorations already on display) social calendars start to fill up for most of us. Stress has always been suspected as a contributing factor to weakening the body’s immune response. According to an article written by Harvard this “fact” is mere speculation.

*“Studying the relationship between stress and the immune system presents difficult challenges. For one thing, stress is difficult to define. What may appear to be a stressful situation for one person is not for another.”

There are various ways to help boost the immune system to help keep a person healthy during this cold and flu season. Here are ways to improve your immune system:

  1. Get a massage! Massage increases the body’s natural killer cells, white blood cells, which aid in the fight against bacteria and infection. Massage also naturally enhances the body’s ability to get nourishment to important areas.

  2. Rest. Everyone has different needs and sleep in no exception. The recommended amount is 6-8 hours of quality sleep.

  3. Wash your hands thoroughly and often.

  4. Stay hydrated.

  5. Refrain from eating saturated fats. Eat green leafy veggies instead.

Other ways to either help prevent from getting sick or recover from illness involve diet and supplements. Incorporating probiotics into your diet as needed can also be beneficial. Raw honey, vitamin D, immune boosting herbs (ie garlic, turmeric,pumpkin, cinnamon, parsnips, cayenne pepper, and ginger) that contain antimicrobial, antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties.

How ever you decide to prepare for this year’s cold and flu season, I hope some of these natural suggestions will be of use. My advice is always to be proactive instead of waiting until you start experiencing symptoms. If you are fighting a cold and are comfortable getting a massage DO SO! Massage increases the body’s circulation which stimulates the production of healthy cells.

Sources:

*“How to boost your immune system, Tips to fight disease and strengthen immunity.” Harvard Health Publishing, Harvard Medical School (2014, updated 2016). 23rd Sept. 2017 <https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/how-to-boost-your-immune-system>