Back to School Bug Brigade

It’s that time of year again – Back to [Home] School!

This is that lovely time of year when kids dive in head first and swap cooties! Typically medical offices and urgent cares look like an abandoned Western Frontier Town right about now – tumbleweed and all.

Back to school bugs Back to school physical exams are done and the dust begins to settle and then BOOM! Typically at just about two weeks after school starts there is a flood of kids coming in like a Petri Dish Parade.

Back to school bugsThe incubation period on all the cooties has expired and they begin to rear their ugly heads – strep throat, colds, stomach flu, the list goes on….

So what can you do to protect you and yours?

There are a few thing things that you can do to gird up your immune system. The most obvious is to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet with plenty of (hopefully organic) vegetables, fruits, and healthy fats and protein – in that order! That is honestly the best foundation.  Hippocrates even knew that everything begins in the gut.

Back to school bugs

About 80% of your immune system is found in your gut in the GALT system (Gut-Associated Lymphoid Tissue).

Back to school bugs

With that in mind there are additional things that you can do to strengthen or regulate the immune system via the influence of what you ingest.  First and foremost taking a good quality probiotic daily can fortify the defenses in your gut and help crowd out any bad bugs trying to take up residence.  If you tend to have recurrent ear and/or throat infections, you can also use a probiotic powder.  After brushing your teeth at night, sprinkle a little bit of the powder on the back of your tongue so that the good bacteria found in the probiotics can colonize the back of your throat and the opening of your ear tubes overnight to discourage the growth of the bad guys like strep! The Waldeyer’s Ring of Tonsillar tissue is a ring around the back of your throat full of immune system tissue and modulating cells. Let’s give them what they need!

Back to school bugs

 

Another option is taking colostrumColostrum is that nutrient rich, antibody laden golden richness that is produced as the “first milk” when a child is born.  You can actually purchase grass-fed, cow colostrum and reap all of the benefits of the immune boosters there, too. Colostrum helps regulate the balance of immune cells in your system.  You have two types of helper cells in your immune system, Th1 and Th2 (T helper cells 1 and 2, respectively).  Oftentimes due to insults like poor diet, infections, and environmental toxins the balance of these two types of cells is off and, therefore, not functioning optimally.  Think of it like this: your Th1 cells are your Watchers on the Wall and are supposed to protect the kingdom from any possible threat while the Th2 cells are the villagers down below.  Now the Th2 cells aren’t pushovers by any means and can wield a sword when necessary but they are not the same caliber of warriors like the trained fighters on the Wall. You do need both but The Watchers on the Wall (Th1) need to do their job properly so that the villagers (Th2) can do the other things that they are better trained to do and not wear themselves doing things that are above their pay grade.  Due to environmental insults all too often the Th2 cells are all over the place doing way too much and the Th1 cells are laying down on the job.  Taking colostrum can help rev up your Th1 cells so that they can do their job properly and the Th2 cells can go back to business as usual.

One thing that you can also do to help prevent the SPREAD of germs is to teach your children (and yourselves) to wash your hands properly, dry them off and then use that paper towel to turn off the faucet (moist Petri dish) and then use it again to grab the knob (Petri dish number 2) and open the door with it, THEN throw it away.  Also, when you cough or sneeze, do so into your ELBOW – not your hands (that you will then use to open a door, use a pen or something else and spread the joy).  Some viruses like one of the most common causes of the stomach flu can survive on surfaces for 6 WEEKS!! This is how they get passed around so far so fast – think cruise ships. So WASH. YOUR. HANDS! Also, wipe down and sterilize door knobs, toilet handles, sink faucets, etc to slow the spread of the germs.

If perchance you lose the battle and get sick, all is not lost! There are a lot of natural things that you can do to help shorten the course of your illness.  Too much to include here today so put a pin in it, sign up for our newsletter @ MommyMadeMD.com, and be sure to have that info and much more delivered straight to your inbox in the future.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask me via the comment box below @ www.MommyMadeMD.com

The Doctor is in!

Happy Healthy Living!

Until next time…

Take Home Tidbits

  • 80% of your immune system is in your gut. Protect it with probiotics and colostrum.
  • Cough and/or sneeze into your ELBOW not your hands to reduce the spread of germs.
  • Some viruses can survive on surfaces for SIX WEEKS so WASH. YOUR. HANDS!