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Personal & Financial

Fighting the Flu with Food

Dr. Serge Gregoire

Fighting the Flu with Food
M_a_y_a via GettyImages

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Your body's immune system is your first line of defense against attacks from germs, bacteria, and viral agents like the flu. The immune system detects these harmful invaders and begins the process of isolating and destroying them. The immune system only works if it has the fuel that it needs, an important consideration for young attorneys who do not feel like time off is an option.

You see, the immune system is called a “system” because it is comprised of various organs and sub-systems that work together in harmony. The major parts of the immune system include the thymus, the spleen, lymph, bone marrow, white blood cells, antibodies, and hormones. Each part of the immune system depends upon proper nutrition to be able to function at peak efficiency and enable you to meet with clients and make deadlines. If even one component of the immune system underperforms, the entire system is at risk of failing. A failed immune system leaves the body with no protection from any type of attack.

Unfortunately, most people have diets that fail to provide even the minimum nutritional levels that the immune system requires to do its work. Maintaining appropriate nutritional levels becomes particularly challenging in office environments where food options only range from vending machine snacks to coffee shop pastries. Attorneys trapped in this environment may have the types of poor diet habits that make them susceptible to contracting the flu.

As new attorneys, you have busy schedules, but you do not need to let your immune system fail you when you need it the most. You have options.

You can give your body’s immune system exactly what it needs to operate at peak efficiency, and you can do it without having to eat a variety of specialty foods, in two easy steps:

Avoid White Refined Sugar

Clinical nutritional research shows that every time you eat white refined sugar, your immune system is weakened for about two weeks. Yes, for two weeks following the consumption of sugar, you are at an increased risk of getting infections, such as colds, flu, bronchitis, pneumonia, etc.

Eat Fresh Foods

By fresh foods, I mean nothing from a box. Foods in a box tend to be less nutritious because they are processed and stripped of their nutritional value. When you eat those foods, you deplete your immune system, making you more susceptible to viruses. Therefore, you should avoid processed foods and eat plenty of fresh foods, such as vegetables, fruits, nuts, seafood, fish, eggs, and meat.

This is the foundation for building a good diet, strengthening your immune system, and remaining healthy as you establish yourself as a new professional!