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  • Writer's pictureLisa Chadsey

Building the immune system during flu season

Updated: Apr 24

Over the past month (and even now) there’s been a rather nasty virus spreading itself around. On top of that, there are still rounds of COVID also going around that linger and leave us with cloudy minds. You can hear it in the sniffling of kids, the coughing of passing teens, and the gravelly voice with the remnants of the cold in older adults in the grocery stores. 

I myself got it and it lasted a lot longer than most colds do. I put myself on light therapy to help alleviate the symptoms, but I was still amazed at how the symptoms lingered and how this flu season has already given us some pretty nasty sickness. “Since the start of the COVID pandemic, the timing and duration of flu activity has been less predictable.” (Link 1) Have you felt the changing impacts of the flu season & variants of COVID on your own life?

As windshields frost over and snow becomes the norm, I know that I want to keep my family as healthy as possible. Especially with Christmas on the horizon. So lets dive deeper. 

So what exactly happens during flu season?

Well, it will surprise no one that the shift in the seasons adds stress to our body. The colder temperatures can compromise our immune systems. On top of this, many studies have shown that the “influenza virus is happier in cold, dry weather and thus better able to invade our bodies,” which during communal & more indoor-focused events allows the catching and spreading of viral infections to become even easier. 

The flu (short for Influenza) is a viral respiratory illness that invades your cells which leads to the symptoms of sickness. This becomes more predominant starting in October, running through December and normally peaking in February. It can last on through May, but normally ends in March. 

There are around a billion cases of seasonal influenza annually, including 3–5 million cases of severe illness.” (Link 1.)

During this time of year, school begins again and kids are more likely to spread the flu at sports practice, during class, and at daycare for the little ones. Even the gatherings of families from across state lines brings on transmission. This was something that I learned that surprised me: “Adults are able to spread the virus one day prior to the appearance of symptoms and up to seven days after symptoms begin.” (Link 3)

“In addition to flu viruses, several other respiratory viruses also spread during flu season and can cause symptoms similar to those seen with flu infection. These respiratory viruses include rhinovirus (one cause of the “common cold”) and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which is the most common cause of severe respiratory illness in young children as well as a leading cause of death from respiratory illness in those aged 65 years and older.”

What are the symptoms of the flu & the current COVID strain?

Signs of the flu:

Referenced from Link 2

The symptoms of the flu (aka influenza) usually begin 1-2 days after you are infected by another individual who has the virus. You may experience:

  • Fever

  • Sore throat and runny nose

  • Inflamed lymph nodes

  • Cough (usually dry)

  • Foggy thinking and headache

  • Muscle and joint pain

Signs of COVID (Current strains Eris (EG.5) and Omicron BA.2.86)

Referenced from link 4. 

These symptoms are very similar to earlier strains of COVID.

  • New loss of taste or smell

  • Shortness of breath

  • Fever

  • Sore throat

  • Congestion/runny nose

  • Body or Headache

  • Fatigue

  • Nausea 

  • Diarrhea

How can I take care of myself with the flu roaming around?

Personally I recommend a couple of simple adjustments to your life - make sure that you’re taking time to get good rest, take zinc and vitamin C, and eat foods that support your body. (I’m thinking hardy broths to keep you hydrated, healthy greens with a variety of vitamins, any berries with antioxidants, and yummy natural fats.) And of course, use light therapy! 

Here is what the professionals recommend (Referenced from Link 2):

People with mild symptoms should:

  • Stay home to rest and avoid infecting other people

  • Drink plenty of fluids

  • Treat other symptoms such as fever

  • Seek medical care if symptoms get worse.

People at high risk or with severe symptoms should be treated with antiviral medications as soon as possible. They include people who are:

  • Pregnant

  • Children under 59 months of age

  • Aged 65 years and older

  • Living with other chronic illnesses

  • Receiving chemotherapy

  • Those with suppressed immune systems due to HIV or other conditions

How does light therapy help during the fly season and with COVID?

Light therapy has a lot to offer with flu and COVID recovery. 

Red light therapy helps to repair immune cells, which is crucial for those suffering from the viral infection that comes from both COVID and influenza. The light therapy session also helps your body devote energy to circulation (think congestion, reduction of inflammation, and better blood flow), and cellular healing which impacts your immune system and reduces the strain and stress that has been placed upon it!

On another level, the light therapy device emits 660 and 850 nm wavelengths of light within both the red and near infrared spectrum. Chromatophores within our cells respond to these energetic wavelengths and increase the level of available energy (ATP) to jumpstart the body's engine and get you the resources you need to repair, protect, and defend!

Light therapy is like a warm blanket on a cold day, it provides you an added layer of resilience/protection against external viruses and invaders. 

Alright folks, I’ve shared a lot with you about seasonal illnesses, but what I really want you to know is that it’s December starting tomorrow and I can’t wait for Christmas music and celebration. 

Sending so much love and cheer your way!

Lisa the Light Lady


If you want to learn more about Light Therapy & my Light Therapy work, you can follow me with the links below, or email me at - thank you for reading!

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Links referenced above:

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