Flu – A meaningful biological program
The flu is a upper respiratory tract illness caused by one of several specific viruses. Given these different sources, it’s no wonder we don’t have a remedy for common cold or flu. But you need not worry, for its up to your immune system to help fight back
An increase in body temperature has been known, since ancient times, to be associated with infection and inflammation. Since a febrile response is highly conserved in nature (even so-called cold blooded animals move to warmer places when they become ill) it would seem important that we devote more attention to this important response. Having a fever might be uncomfortable but research has been showing that having a fever is part of a efficient immune response. We had previously thought that the microbes that infect us simply can’t replicate as well when we have fevers, but new research also suggests that the immune system might be temporarily enhanced functionally when our temperatures rise with fever. Although very high body temperature is dangerous and should be controlled, new research shows that we may need to reconsider how and when we treat most mild fevers.
MAKING SENSE OF YOUR FLU SYMPTOMS Cold and flu symptoms are not just annoyances that can keep you on the couch all day; they, in fact, indicate what your immune system is doing to fight off the infection. A runny nose helps to trap and wash the germs from the nose and sinuses. All mucus discharges are in fact natures way of eradicating germs. Within a few days of a viral infection, the fluid from a runny nose may change colour from clear to yellow to green. Mucus is designed by nature to trap offending viruses, which are then efficiently and quickly expelled from the body through coughing and sneezing. A great number of people have misunderstood fever and believe that fever can be dangerous, especially when fever occurs in a child. If you are still under the impression that having a fever of 100-101 is an indication of a dangerous situation, relax! It’s not. It’s a healthy response. Viruses are sensitive to temperature changes and cannot survive above normal body heat. Your body uses fever to help destroy the virus just like our grandmothers boiled water to kill germs. Unfortunately, many parents panic, not realising that their child’s temperature is ideal to accomplish healing. Contrary to popular belief, the best course of action is usually little or no action when it comes to a mild fever. Rather than working against it, one should try to work with it and allow it to run its course. The only time you need to worry or seek medical attention is if it rises very high, very fast. This could be a sign of an infection too serious for your body to handle. To support your fever, we often recommend eating foods like broths and water. Once the fever has been broken, one can start eating solid food again. Fever is also best supported with plenty of good old-fashioned rest. You might experience sore muscles with the flu as it is also a product of you body’s immune response. The immune system pulls proteins from muscles, leaving your muscles achy. These programs are in fact designed by nature to help the individual cope. These are meaningful biological programs of nature to help you recover so keep smiling even when you are feeling down with flu realising that after all its natures way of healing you.
The writers are consultants at VitaNova Clinics, Goa
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