5 Tips to Getting Through the Flu (and 5 tips if you Don’t!)

Pneumonia - a word I have unfortunately come to know all too well in my 53 years . Apparently my lungs are susceptible from years of smoking and having had bronchitis over and over throughout the years hasn't helped. When I quit smoking 16 years ago at the pleas of family, I was content knowing that I would no longer have chronic bad breath, I wouldn't have to be a ninja and hide behind the house for a couple of puffs and I might just be able to avoid some type of smoking-induced-cancer. I quickly forgot about the damage I had already done to my sweet little lungs. Pneumonia comes around every 3-4 years to remind me. Last week we (my business team and I), lost a member suddenly to pneumonia. After my initial shock of her untimely and tragic passing, my second thought was "who dies of pneumonia?" these days. Well, guess what... apparently 52,282 people did in 2015! That's 16.9 for every 100,000 people in the U.S. in 2015 alone. Are these staggering numbers to you? Maybe. Maybe not. It isn't close to the 7.5 million who die from cancer each year, but nonetheless, it is something to consider if you have ever been a smoker, are susceptible to chronic coughs and or bronchitis/pneumonia. Couple those things with obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure and you now have reason for real concern.imsick

What can you do to protect yourself and your family? Here's a few of my tips:

1. Don't go to the most convenient Urgent Care. Seriously - I went based on location and being in my Blue Shield network. I walked in and it was clear to me I was not going to get top shelf treatment. In fact, I should have trusted my gut and walked out when I saw that the only "toy" in the waiting room (I say that loosely) had a rusty nail sticking out of the side of it. 2. Don't believe everything a doctor tells you. The first two doctors who saw me both wrote template scrips for me based on what they had been given as "protocol" for my symptoms. They never did a chest x-ray, didn't spend more than 2 minutes with me in the room and wrote generic brand "sinus" medication prescriptions. Now I'm not saying I need the hard stuff right out of the gate (although, being an '80's party girl I still have a hard time "just saying 'no"), excusemebut seriously? My cough was shaking the building! Sinus meds? GTFO. 3. Listen to your body. If you feel like you need to go to a different doctor and get a 2nd, 3rd or even 4th opinion, GO! After two visits, an argument with the 2nd doctor over whether to put me on antibiotics for the green goop I was hacking up, I pulled up my knickers and marched right into an Urgent care I knew was legit. Sure enough - 15 minutes later, 2-x-rays later, and there she is...Mrs. "P", residing in my left lung. 4. Cut yourself some slack. You work so hard all week and what good is it if you end up dead on Sunday? If you feel sick, listen to your body. You only have one and life can't be lived to the fullest if you're not around. I know that sounds easier for someone who has a job that pays for sick time, but even for those of us who work hourly or on commission, try to remember...the Universe will deliver what you require. FAITH.  Yes, [sing it!] you gotta have FAITH!!   Can I get an "AMEN?" 5. Take this time to Love Yourself. I've had nearly 10 days now to myself. I've had an opportunity between hacking fits to consider things we don't take time to think about most days. Be kind to yourself. There are plenty of people in the world who won't be kind to you, but you can rely on yourself for that. Be tender, gift yourself with beautiful music, rest and love. Because if today is the day Mrs. P wants to take me, I want to go out listening to beautiful music, not a podcast. I want to go out laughing with friends, not arguing with business partners. I want to go out with knowing I was the best mom, best friend and best partner anyone could hope for. And I am. So, as I sit here, getting ready to listen to a Podcast (yes, I'm past the dying part so I can get back to business now), I want to pass on these final thoughts... HEALTH is WEALTH. If you aren't healthy, you'll never be wealthy. Not in money, not in spirit and not in love. Taking care of yourself should be your #1 priority every day. What will you do today that will better your health (and wealth) for tomorrow? Here are a few suggestions: 1. Check your Insurance for coverage at quality facilities and know where you will go if you ever need to head to the UC. If you don't have insurance, find a facility that offers quality care for walk-in "uninsured" patients. 2. Stock your refrigerator with organic, whole food nutrition. 3. Drink lots of non-sugar beverages and stay hydrated! 4. Wash your hands often!! The spread of disease is rampant and you can cut your chances of contracting the flu considerably if you keep your hands clean. 5. Get 8 hours of sleep a nightsleep. Seriously - so many people say they are good on 4-5 hours, but that's all nice and cool until you get sick. Lack of sleep wears down your immune system and makes you more at risk of catching something. Get your ZZZZZzzzzz!   If you enjoyed this post, please comment below! I love hearing from my readers and invite you to speak your mind. Just be kind about it...I'm still [cough cough] a little sensitive. 😉  
[Special Thanks to all of you who have been so loving and texting and calling.  I know I can't talk so your texts have been very helpful!  Some great APPS have been forwarded to me and I'm making good use of them!  Thanks Mindy for the Bitmoji app - I used it above as you can see.]

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by Leslie

Leslie Maltz has been helping clients in the greater Los Angeles area get into shape with sports conditioning, lifestyle coaching, nutrition, weight loss and post-injury training since 1996. She is certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) as a Personal Trainer and Nutrition Expert and Performance Enhancement Specialist.