Flu 101 – How to keep healthy and treat sickness naturally

This has been posted all over the internet with the arrival of flu season and the dreaded H1N1, but I feel it bears repeating with a slightly different bent.  I say this as I sit in the living room watching PBS with yet another sick child (a cold this time.)  It started with my father getting the flu, who promptly passed it on to 14 month old Thing Two.

Now Thing One is dealing with a cough and a sore throat, and told me he wanted to lay on the couch with his blankie and pillow instead of eating breakfast.  Apparently he’s not that sick, since I fell asleep on the couch, too, and he went up to the kitchen, pulled up a chair to the counter, climbed up to the counter, and got his Halloween candy off the top of the cabinets!  I woke up to the smell of Milk Duds and Charms pops.

So what are natural things you can do to keep healthy?

1. Wash, wash, wash your hands with regular soap.  If you are really concerned, you can use antibacterial, but really, it’s not proven to be any more effective than regular soap.  Make sure you wash your whole hand, fingers, fingernails and up your arms for at least 30 seconds.

2. Don’t touch your face.  Wash your hands before you do.  Many viruses are carried in respiratory vapors, but you can’t avoid breathing, so at least limited the vapors that get on your hands and then into your mouth or eyes.

3. Strengthen your immune response – use immune-strengthening herbs, minerals, and vitamins to help boost your immune system. There are many great teas that put many of these herbs and vitamins together in one tea bag.   Disclaimer: This doesn’t guarantee in any way that you won’t get sick, so don’t come back to me if you were taking Vitamin C and Echinachea and you still get sick!


What to do if a family member gets sick:

1. Wash, wash, wash – not only your hands, but the sick person’s bedding and clothing on hot.  They shouldn’t share any toweling.  And their toothbrush either needs to be santized (soaking it in hydrogen peroxide works well) or thrown out.  If you choose to sanitize, keep in mind that not only the bristles are contaminated, but the entire toothbrush head and possibly the handle.

2. Quarantine the person to minimize exposure to others.  They may have already contaminated the household before symptoms even appear (as in the case of H1N1) but it’s good to take precautions.

3. Make sure the sick person gets lots of fluids.  Chicken soup is an excellent choice for both nutrition and hydration (and some studies have shown that chicken may have some immune strengthening properties.)

4. And lots of sleep!


I’m obviously not a doctor in any way, shape, or form.  I’m just a mother who has dealt with the flu often enough, but I don’t consider myself an expert on the flu.  So make sure you check out what the Centers for Disease Control has to say about the flu.



One response to this post.

  1. This is a great post.. Very informative… I can see that you put a lot of hard work on your every post that’s why I think I’d come here more often. Keep it up! By the way, you can also drop by my blogs. They’re about Vegetable Gardening and Composting. I’m sure you’d find my blogs helpful too.


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