While you might imagine flu season as an end of the year event (when the flu vaccine is being heavily advertised) it usually goes through March, and in a cold year it can dip into June! This year, peak flu season is happening right now, so gear up and get ready.

“Flu” is colloquially used to refer to stomach flu, and a few days of being tied to the toilet in one way or the other. But true influenza is a knock-you-down sort of illness. The type of stomach flu more commonly talked about about also peaks in winter when viruses (like Norovirus) are more active (summer spreads bacterial food poisoning, like Listeria).

Influenza is a respiratory illness. While a young, healthy adult might show minimal symptoms, it’s pretty easy to distinguish flu symptoms from cold symptoms (it’s much easier to march forward with a cold)—colds are more likely to bring congestion and a runny nose, while flu is more strongly associated with that deep chest cough and aching. Influenza is airborne, and tends to explode after the travel season (AKA holidays, or right now!).

To help slow airborne transmission, you can use a humidifier (or boil some water, as long as it’s attended!). You can also dramatically slow cold and flu transmission with frequent hand washing.

If you’re feeling tired, listen to your body. Sleep is often a huge clue our immune system needs to do some extra work, and getting it can help prevent or shorten illness. (Sometimes bulking up your diet a bit can help too, since you need extra energy/nutritional support, and might not want to eat once you’re sick!).

For an extra daily boost, try colloidal silver. It supports the immune system as it battles all sorts of pathogens.

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