Many people fear November, not because of holiday shopping madness (well, maybe partly because of that!), but because everywhere you turn, it seems like someone is coughing, sneezing or blowing their nose in your direction. It’s the peak of the dreaded cold and flu season!

In today’s hectic world, none of us has time to get sick. If we do fall ill, who would handle the projects and deadlines at work, watch the kids and pets on the weekend, or cook and clean? Things fall apart when illness hits, and they take a long time to get back on track. With the busy and stressful holiday season looming, now is the absolute WORST time to be sick!

Believe it or not, it isn’t a change in weather that causes you to fall ill. Here are the real reasons you may be reaching for that Kleenex box right now.

Top 3 Reasons for Catching the Cold and Flu, with Solutions

1. Poor digestive health.

The Problem: When you don’t eat enough nutrient and fibre filled vegetables, your healthy gut bacteria dies. They need fibre from fruits and vegetables to survive. Unhealthy eating cripples your digestive system and limits the nutrients it’s able to absorb.
The Solution: Did you know that 70% of your immune system is found within your digestive system? What you eat matters when it comes to illness! To prevent getting sick, avoid caffeine, table sugar, alcohol and artificial sweeteners junk food. When we eat, we often lick our fingers subconsciously. Keep yourself healthy by washing your hands a ton! If you do get ill, drink a lot of water and be sure to eat these foods to help you get better faster:

  • fermented foods
  • dark, leafy greens
  • garlic
  • ginger
  • and any fruits and vegetables of course!

So the saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”, really does have some merit!

2. Poor quality sleep.

The Problem: So many of us don’t prioritize sleep. We’re actually proud of ourselves if we’re able to make it through day after day with getting less than the universally recommended 7-9 hours a night. Without sleep, our immune system is compromised. We become more prone to catching every little virus that’s going around.
The Solution: Get to bed! Make sure you’re getting 7-9 hours of sleep each night and try to get to bed at close to the same time each night. This will best prepare your system to fight against anything going around.

3. Stress.

The Problem: Not all stress is bad. A good kind of stress pushes you out of your comfort zone to grow and improve. What needs to be minimized is the unhealthy kind of stress. That long-term, chronic stress that makes you feel negative and breaks you down on an ongoing basis. Chronic stress can lead to a host of problems including a weakened immune system. This type of stress leads you to more likely catch any virus being passed around.
The Solution: Meditation, relaxation breathing and slowing down are all important tactics to manage stress. Listen to your body and slow down,especially when you are starting to feel sick.

To Sum it Up…about the Cold and Flu

The cold and flu runs wild from now until the holiday time. Protect yourself from the germs being passed around by eating nutrient dense foods and avoiding junk food. Get a full night’s rest consistently and minimize your stress. Stay healthy this year!