Influenza (flu) is a viral infection and is caused by influenza viruses A and B. |
The flu spreads very easily from person to person. You can get it from people who cough, sneeze or talk near you. Preventing it's spread was impossible in previous years, but these days we have many things to combat the illness. Flu shots are the main weapon, but information and communication are equally effective in reducing the flu's wrath.
Some people, such as older adults, young children, and people with specific health conditions, are at high risk for serious flu complications. In extreme cases, complications can lead to death.
The common symptoms of the flu include high fever, body aches, dry cough, extreme tiredness, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Runny nose may also occur but is more common in children than adults. Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea. If you have one or two of these symptoms, it's recommended that you see your doctor.
More information about flu diagnosis is available at http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/diagnosis/
The key steps that you can follow include:
1. Get plenty of sunshine or supplemental vitamin D3
2. Wash your hands regularly often with soap and water.
3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way. Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
4. Don't skip any meals. Eating 3 meals with snacks in between is the ideal way to maintain both energy and a healthy weight. When you skip meals and get hungry, you're more than likely to choose foods that aren't very good for you.
If you are eating away from home, take food with you or know where you can buy healthy food from.
5. Learn about how to prepare foods. Instead of deep frying, try grilling, stir frying, microwaving, baking, and even boiling. You should also try fresh or even dried herbs and spices to add flavor to your food. Before you eat any type of meat, be sure to trim the fat and skin off of it.
6. Avoid a lot of sugar, Drinks that contain sugar are a major source of empty energy. What this means, is that the drinks contain a lot of energy that your body may not need, and it doesn't contain any vitamins or minerals. If you plan to drink sugary drinks, don't go overboard - limit yourself to 1 a day.
7. Avoid thinking about diets There are no good food nor any bad foods. All food can be a part of a healthy diet, when eaten in moderation. You don't need to buy any low carb, fat free, or even diet foods, as these foods normally have lots of other added ingredients to replaces the carbohydrates or fat.
8. Perform aerobic exercise a minimum of 30 minutes three times a week. Log this on your food diary. Aerobic means any exercise that increases your breathing and heart rate. Walking is fine! Do only what you can to begin with. If you have other health problems, consult your doctor before embarking on any strong physical exercise.
9. Eat fruit at least twice a day.
10. A calm atmosphere should be maintained for a good sleep.
11. Young children are also at high risk of serious complications. If the baby shows some signs of distress like excessive crying,convulsions,fever with rigor,stiffness of neck,frequent vomiting and diarrhoea, bluish discolouration of the body,difficult breathing with grunting, etc. pay attention and consult your doctor.
12. Guzzle up on green tea. It can be used as a substitute for coffee. Tea has the ability to stimulate metabolism, and unlike coffee, it has no undesirable side effects when too much is consumed.
13. Use your imagination to relieve daily stress. After a long stressful day at work and then managing all the errands at home, it makes sleeping almost impossible. Find a quiet dark room or area where you can be alone and light some candles. Let you imagination take you off to an island somewhere, be creative and listen to the trees move or imagine you see butterflies. Allow your guided imagination to take you on a road trip where peace rests at the end of the journey.
14. The infected person should avoid contact with other people. Their saliva and mucus are rampant with the virus and coughing and sneezing are definite ways that the virus could spread. Healthy people should avoid contact with an infected person as well.
15. Preparedness is the best defense against the coming flu season. One definite step toward preventing the disease is to get an annual flu shot. There are two forms of flu vaccine. The first being the common flu shot, usually administered by a shot in the arm. The second is a nasal spray form that is misted into the nasal cavity. Which you choose to have administered is up to you, but it is becoming more evident that getting a flu vaccination is vital to your health during this season. Vaccination also can aide in preventing the spread of the flu as less people will contract and spread it. Today, however, there are vaccines that will greatly reduce, if not completely eliminate your chances of contracting influenza.
Managing our health from day to day is something we all have to learn. While we have to learn to manage stress, keep in mind that we cannot terminate stress forever. You need to learn to thrive on stress and stay in control on a daily basis.
A person needs to realize that eating right and working out is not just a passing fancy, but a way of life.
Taking this course of action will reduce your risk of getting the flu and make it's spread lessen.
Finally, you have to learn to make goals that influence good health, but you will also need to se goals that will help you to feel better about yourself.
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