At Intake, we like to start each morning by scrolling through the news and freaking ourselves out. For instance, listen to this timely piece of winter news: The CDC has estimated that this flu season (from October 2019 until the date of this post in January), there have already been between 9 and 14 million cases of the flu.
Why is it that each year the numbers seem to climb? For one, the flu is tricky. The flu is a sly fox that morphs into something new and terrible each season, waiting for your immune system to slip up and leave the backdoor unlocked. So, even if you’ve been getting your flu shots, washing your hands, and drinking your orange juice, you could still get sick.
While it’s important to listen to your doctor when it comes to staying healthy, here’s one small change that we’ve made to help keep ourselves a little more protected—
Don’t breathe through your mouth, especially at the gym (free weights can harbor over 300 times more bacteria than a toilet seat—sorry and you’re welcome). When you breathe through your nose, your paranasal sinuses produce nitric oxide, which acts as a potent microbial and helps kill airborne pathogens before they enter your body. Your mouth, on the other hand, doesn’t have this filtration system, making your body work harder to fight off unwanted bacteria.
However, do get regular exercise to keep your immune system active and running efficiently. Studies have shown that even moderate exercise is enough to boost your immune system enough to help ward off illness and infections. So, if there was any season to wear your Intake band religiously, this is it.
What are your foolproof methods for staying healthy during peak flu season? Let us know!