1) Make your body more alkaline and less acidic. See my post on Why Alkaline Foods Might Keep You Healthy.
2) Give Up Dairy When You Are Sick...see my post on More Milk Info if you need inspiration. Interestingly, bacteria and viruses thrive in an acidic environment so by tweaking your diet, you can make your body less of a comfy home for bugs. Dairy is a food group that people who are sick might want to think about giving up. I am not into dairy for a bunch of reasons, but if you do use milk, I would recommend the non-homogenized milk they sell at Dean and Deluca with the cream on top-which is still dairy but at least it is slightly less processed. Or go to France. It is really the processing of milk that is the problem. And the giant vat of milk is probably the biggest difference between milk in France and here. But try giving up dairy if you have a cough and congestion that won't go away. Interestingly, strep needs a dairy environment to take hold and one doctor said that he had never seen a child who was dairy free with strep.
3) Begin or Add Probiotics. See my post on Probiotics for all the health benefits of probiotics as well as ordering information. Probiotics make your body less acidic which means that the viruses and bacteria aren't as likely to take hold. And by increasing the good bacteria in your gut you are strengthening your immune system. Also, most probiotics are cultured on milk. Which supposedly makes the milk less allergenic because it is fermented, but I have experienced that to not be true with my son who is super sensitive to dairy. He can not tolerate any of the over counter "casein free" probiotics. The one we use is casein (dairy) free and several top integrated doctors sell it because it is a really clean product. For a long time it was sold only through doctors because they want to make sure the product was refrigerated but now you can get it through Invite Health. I just thought I would mention it in case you wanted to upgrade your probiotics! It is good to switch up probiotics because they each contain different strains.
4) Make Some Tea for yourself or your kids when you are sick...see my post on Mint, Chamomile and Ginger Tea for some ideas on which teas are best to use for which symptoms.
5) Manuka Honey is supposed to break down the biofilm that surrounds the virus. Getting rid of the biofilm is really important if you have an illness that won't go away. Only specific honeys can break down the biofilm so try to get Manuka honey from New Zealand. If you are thinking of reaching for some antibiotics, you might want to try some honey first after reading about The Antibacterial Activity of Honey Against Antiobiotic Resistant Strains of Staph or Other Manuka Honey Evidence.
5) Oscillococcinum: This is probably my most way out there, but most well tested (by me!) recommendation: take some oscillococcinum at the first signs of getting the flu. It is a homeopathic remedy made in France that really works. No one knows why. It might be a placebo, but if it is a placebo it is a top notch placebo that works for many people. Here is a coupon for Oscillo.
6) Get some coconut oil which is antiviral/antibacterial.For more info see Coconut Oil: Antiviral and Antimicrobial. Run, don't walk to your nearest health food store for the coconut oil. It is a staple in my house.
Please let me know if you have other ways of staying healthy that I have overlooked. And an early happy and healthy holiday season from whattofeedyourkids.com.