Good News/Bad News?

January 4, 2016

Hand Washing Close UpEl Nino is keeping this winter mild. Flu season is MUCH milder than expected. BUT. Stomach flu has taken off this year—and it’s not just the high-profile Chipotle outbreaks (one of e. Coli and one of Norovirus!). Hospitals are reporting lots of cases of stomach flu, from the West coast to the East.

How do you catch stomach flu? Most stomach flu cases are tied to handwashing (e. Coli, Salmonella), but others, like Norovirus, have stronger symptoms and spread more easily.

At home, you can easily prevent most forms of stomach flu by using hot soapy water to clean your hands, cutting boards, knives, plates, and kitchen. Always clean a wider area than you think you need to (or everything). One of the recently discovered tricks of Norovirus is that it spreads farther than people think, and so old cleaning methods were updated to be ridiculously more thorough.

Out, there’s less you can do. Restaurant staff, whether you’re eating fast food or fine dining, don’t get a lot of sick leave. They work long, busy hours that depress their immune system, and come into contact with all manner of people, who also tend to have weakened immune systems and be sick this time of year. It’s always a roll of the dice, but there are a few things you can do for yourself: wash your own hands, eat meals that are served piping hot (so, avoid salads, especially ones with higher risk foods like sprouts), and if you see a red flag (sniffling server, already understaffed because of workplace illness, whatever) start supporting your immune system when you get home.

When it comes to stomach flu, immune support is two pronged.

Colloidal silver supports your immune system, and is a great boost when you come into contact with illness (but is better as a daily immune support!).

Building up your good gut bacteria is also important. Again, you’ll do better with daily support (whether it’s a fermented food/drink like yogurt or a probiotic supplement) but if you feel that rumble or think you ate something iffy, go straight to a big back-up dose of probiotics. And keep going back—stomach flu can knock your good bacteria, and leave you off kilter for weeks. If you aren’t eating normally because of the holidays, the kicker is that you might not be encouraging the right sort of bacteria to grow back if you don’t take control with a good probiotic source (live colonies, an assortment of strains).

Want to do both? Just don’t take colloidal silver and probiotics at the same time. A better strategy is to take colloidal silver on an empty stomach, at least 15 minutes before eating, and to either eat something probiotic rich with your meal or take a supplement later.

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