No, you're not seeing viruses in this photo, but this flower that I photographed sort of looks like them.
According to several healthcare systems, the US is seeing a rise in Flu, Covid and RSV cases. It's daunting to imagine hospitals being overwhelmed again with patients infected by viruses, and it can make one want to stay home as much as possible. However, there are a number of things you can do to help keep your immune system as healthy as possible. That being said, none of these things can completely prevent anyone from catching a virus, and it's important to talk to your primary care provider to understand if preventative measures like vaccines are an option for you.
1. Wear a scarf. According to Eastern medicine, viruses are considered External Wind conditions. External Wind conditions enter "through the neck". Wearing a scarf protects the neck from External Wind. I know this may be challenging to conceptualize, but consider that lymph nodes have white blood cells that help fight bacteria and viruses and many are located in the neck. Keeping these lymph nodes protected from cold air keeps the environment for the lymphatic system optimal.
2. Consume bone broth. Drinking bone broth, especially at this time of year, warms our Kidney and Adrenal Qi, both of which can improve our energy and circulation from our core to our extremities. Keep in mind that the bone broth that's carefully made at home or fresh from Whole Foods and the bone broth that's sitting on a shelf in a box are completely different things. Click here for a great bone broth recipe.
3. Manage stress. Stress greatly impacts our immune health. Relieve stress through acupuncture, exercise, creating art, cooking, and any other activity that improves healthy mental processing.
4. Sleep. Rest is so important for restoring our Qi. If your body is feeling tired enough to go to bed at 8:30pm, listen to you body. That extra 45-60 minutes of sleep can make the body feel a lot better.
5. Get acupuncture. Acupuncture can help relieve the effects of stress, improve sleep quality and support the immune system. You might be wondering how often should you get acupuncture. Everyone's needs are different and the frequency of treatments depends on your stress level and anything else that requires treatment.