Let’s go back in time. About a century ago, the Spanish flu hit the world really hard. It’s true. COVID-19 is not the first pandemic of global proportions. The Spanish flu, called the 1918 flu pandemic, hit different countries of the world in 1918. It started early in 1918 and ended in 1920. By its end, the toll worldwide was over 500 million infected, (a third of the world population) and about 100 million dead worldwide, 675,000 of them Americans. Needless to say, it was one of the deadliest ever.
A century later, another pandemic arrives. It is shaking the world as we speak. Like the Spanish flu, COVID-19’s origin has been traced to China. Both are respiratory illnesses. Also, like the Spanish flu, Americans are bearing the biggest brunt of the coronavirus pandemic racking in about the same number of deaths as the pandemic a century ago.
The question then for you is how should you best survive this winter. Already, the most credible voice on the planet Dr. Anthony Fauci is forecasting a very “harsh” November as infections spike once again. Taking a hard look at two of the most dreaded pandemics in history should be a good start. Above and beyond, however, taking measures to strengthen yourself against the cold of winter is the order of the day.
COVID 19 vs Spanish Flu Pandemic
Since the virus set foot on American soil, pandemic experts have worked double time to understand the virus and slow its spread. And without any delay, experts have been quick to put the two pandemics side by side on a comparison chart.
One obvious fact is that both pandemics hit the world by storm at the start of the century. That they were unexpected and unprecedented is one common denominator. Another is that viruses caused both; the SARS-CoV-2 virus is what caused today’s pandemic while influenza viruses caused the Spanish flu pandemic. Further, both complicate the lungs with pneumonia as a common cause of death.
Social distancing, quarantine, and isolation aren’t new. They have existed for about a century. When the Spanish flu pandemic erupted, these three protocols were also pivotal, just like today. A major difference is that the 1918 pandemic started when World War I was winding up. And that may have contributed to the easy spread of the virus. As American military personnel traveled from camp to camp, so did the virus. In the end, about 40% of them were infected. For one, both pandemics had flu-like symptoms, with fever on top of that list. To determine which pandemic is worst is premature for now. COVID-19 is still putting everyone on their toes as we speak.
How to Strengthen Yourself This Flu Season
Experts, including Dr. Fauci, including have been wary about this winter. The cold has a very sinister way of weakening our defenses. The cold weakens our immune system, reason enough why influenza strikes during winter. That sure complicates the current COVID-19 scenario. Remember that the weaker your immune system is, the more prone you get to be infected by a virus. But certainly, this doesn’t mean you can’t do something about i.
For starters, since the cold is your enemy, keeping warm should be the order of the day. There’s no way about it. Don’t leave yourself at the mercy of the cold. When inside the house, make sure you get all the warmth you need to get going. Cranking up the heater should be wise, so is getting layered clothing.
When outside, you should also keep your body as warm as possible. An electronic scarf for one should come in handy. And if you’re feeling adventurous and want to go skiing or snowboarding, you should be doubly packed. Wearing winter sports brands known to give extra protection against the cold is wise. A good example is putting on a skiing jacket like Arc’teryx when you’re on the slopes on in high altitude. Not only are these jackets stylish, but they’re waterproof and very breathable, perfect when you want to test your limits against the cold outside.
But don’t forget food. What you eat fuels your body. Indeed, food can be a great way to make your immune system very strong. Know that now is not the time to be picky. Opt for as many green vegetables as you deserve. Fruits are also important. A good way to start your mornings is to opt for more protein than carbs. This would help keep you more active during the day.
Then again, stay active. Exercise can also raise your immune system. As your body needs it, don’t make the virus an excuse for not exercising. Here are simple exercise routines you can do while on lockdown. Moreover, you should seek to sleep well. When you sleep, your body’s immune system brings out cytokines that can help protect you from inflammation or infection.
Health is definitely wealth. Pursuing it means you’re putting a premium on protecting yourself and everyone you love this winter against the flu, in time for Christmas and all the good tidings it brings.