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How to Fight a Flu or Cold: Sleep!

10.15.09 How to Fight a Flu or Cold: Sleep!

I know it seems simple.  But I sure don’t do it enough.  Yeah, I’ll go out and buy vitamin C and Echinacea, herbal tea, and zinc lozenges, but I barely get 7 hours a night of sleep at night (and finally, it is not because of my children, per se).


But studies have consistently shown that sleep effects our immune systems in significant ways.


According to the New York Times article, “In a recent study for The Archives of Internal Medicine, scientists followed 153 men and women for two weeks, keeping track of their quality and duration of sleep. Then, during a five-day period, they quarantined the subjects and exposed them to cold viruses. Those who slept an average of fewer than seven hours a night, it turned out, were three times as likely to get sick as those who averaged at least eight hours.


Three times more likely!  Will that get me to turn off the computer?  Put down the book? I hope it becomes the little voice in my head telling me to. 


With all the worries about flu and H1N1, this is one simple thing that can help all of us.  What about you, readers?  How much sleep do you get?  And do you get sick often? 

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