By Lance Gard DC
Cold season? Where do colds go in the off-season?
We live with bacteria, we survive alongside viruses. Here’s an excerpt from the Scientific American; “Biologists estimate we have 380 Trillion viruses living on and inside your body right now– 10 times the number of bacteria” Think about that for a second. How are we not all dead already?
Chiropractors and many other holistic health practitioners have been vocal about supporting the body, and building up a robust immune system for over 100 years; this has been especially important the last several. If we’ve learned anything about healthcare since 2020 it’s that it is in each person’s best interest to be as “healthy” as possible at all times. We never know when the world may be presented with a novel virus that we are forced to deal with as an individual, as well as collective effort.
Supporting your immune system naturally has always been a primary focus of what we do at Gard Wellness Center. Waiting until the building is on fire is not the time to install a sprinkler system. Keeping your body functioning at an optimal level should be everyone’s first priority…without your health what do you have? Reactionary medicine has come a long way since the days of bloodletting, heroin cough syrup and arsenic for fevers, but still has a long way to go in learning how best to support a healthy body in a pre-disease state.
We are constantly surrounded by viruses and bacteria, some good and some bad, but as long as our immune system is working we don’t need to worry about “getting sick”. What we refer to as “getting sick” is very often our body’s natural reaction to a microbe out of place. Let’s take vomiting and diarrhea for example (a lovely thought, right). When you eat something that wasn’t properly cleaned, stored, or prepared, your body’s, very natural and helpful, reaction is to get rid of it…and fast.
Even once it has sufficiently been expelled, your body will continue to get rid of things just to be on the safe side. This is a very natural reaction and a sign of a functioning human. A fever has a similar effect, the raising of your body temperature is to create an inhospitable environment for the invading offender. In most cases it’s best to let the body do what it needs to do. Meaning, you do not want to stop the diarrhea, vomiting, or fever before it has had a chance to do what it needs to do. It is best to stay hydrated and ride it out.
Why do we see an uptick in the cold and flu around the holidays then? I big part of this is closer contact because we are inside more. Less vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin, that supports immune system function, which is less prevalent because we are inside more. Also, there are fewer daylight hours in the winter season. Let’s not forget that high sugar consumption can hinder the immune system as well.
A strong argument could be made that cold/flu season is more about closer contact, less fresh air and sunlight and over indulging in sugary foods for several weeks in a row.
As a pro-health healthcare practitioner I recommend limiting sugary foods/drinks, getting outside (yes, even if it’s cold…you can wear a jacket) exercise, fresh air and sunshine do a body good, and wash your hands frequently, especially when in and around a large group. In my opinion, these are your best shots against the flu this year.