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Take Everyday Steps To Avoid Coming Down With The Flu

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Dr. Elizabeth Yarnell (credit: CBS)

Dr. Elizabeth Yarnell (credit: CBS)

DENVER (CBS4) – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the vaccination is the number one defense against the flu, but there also steps people can take every day to avoid the aches and pains of influenza.

For those who are serious about fighting the flu, it starts at their own front door.

Dr. Elizabeth Yarnell is a naturopath, and she practices what she preaches.

“Would you mind leaving your shoes at the door please,” Yarnell told CBS4’s Kathy Walsh.

Footwear doesn’t make it past the foyer.

“Germs can be tracked in from the bottom of your shoes all through your house,” Yarnell said.

Visitors are expected to make a bee line for the bathroom and wash their hands with soap and water. Towels are color coded and everyone has his or her own set.

“Germs can live on textiles on fabrics for up to 12 days,” Yarnell said. “And that’s when you share towels you’re just passing germs along to other people.”

Family members blow their noses often to keep them clean.

“And get rid of all those foreign objects that are in there.”

They use a sinus rinse if they’ve been in crowds or with sick people. They also take probiotics and eat foods Yarnell believes boost immunity.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

“I’m a big believer in garlic,” she said. “We try to eat a lot of vitamin C in terms of kiwi and strawberries and citrus fruits have a lot of vitamin C.”

She makes a soup with chicken broth and lots of kale.

“Because kale is obviously one of our super foods and has a lot of nutrients in it.”

If somebody does get sick, that person ends up in isolation with plenty of sleep and sympathy.

“It certainly stands out to me as the worst flu season in the past five years,” emergency room Dr. Adit Ginde said.

Dr. Adit Ginde talks with CBS4's Kathy Walsh (credit: CBS)

Dr. Adit Ginde talks with CBS4’s Kathy Walsh (credit: CBS)

Ginde has seen flu since November.

“We’re still very much in the middle of it,” he said.

An expert on vitamin D, his own studies show it is promising, but not yet proven, for flu prevention.

“You’ll hear many people say, ‘Once I started taking high dose vitamin D, I’ve stopped getting colds, I’ve stopped getting the flu, or I got very much fewer,’ ” Ginde said.

Get vitamin D from supplements, salmon, tuna and sun exposure.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

There is no fool-proof flu prevention. The best advice is to take precautions and hope they keep the bug at bay.

When sick, nothing is better than chicken soup. In fact there is one chicken soup recipe that has been scientifically studied and found to ease symptoms. Scientists in two studies found that the combination of the antioxidants, amino acids and vitamins makes you feel better

LINK: Grandma’s Recipe For Fighting The Flu

Find a lot more tips and strategies for avoiding the flu and other viruses on Yarnell’s blog at EffortlessEating.com, or through ElizabethYarnell.com.

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