5 Tips to Avoid the Stomach Flu...

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You know how they say you shouldn't brag?  It is very good advice and I was reminded of it the other day, as I was bragging to myself, "You know, we have never been hit with the stomach flu that envelops the entire family, so clearly... I must be incredibly awesome (ha,ha)." 

Well, two days later, my 5 year old threw up all over my leg at his brothers school's Christmas Concert.  And to add to it, my Dad flew up for the holidays, ...and we have been passing it around since.  So... I won't be bragging about my awesomeness anytime soon!

Here are a few ways to prevent getting sick: 

1. Assume You Will Get Sick and Prepare! 

You know what they say about assuming things... well, in this case I think it is ok! 

I try to do a decent job of keeping sickness supplies around my house for cases like these. 

But, of course, this time I was out of several things and boy... in the middle of everyone being sick is NOT the time you want to be making lists and shopping!

 I decided to put together a list of items I will be placing into a Stomach Flu Survival Kit that can be found here

2. Frequent Hand Washing 

This is always the #1 point of advice, and for good reason.  So, lather up... and now is the time to be REALLY strict with the kiddos too! 

3. The Moment You Think You've Been Exposed, Start This 100% Grape Juice Regimen: 
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Drink 8 oz (and fill up a sippy cup for the kiddos) of 100% pure grape juice (I prefer Welch's), 3 times a day.

The grape juice changes the pH in your intestinal tract so the virus can't multiply. 

You can also add Grapefruit Seed Extract to it, 8 drops for an adult and 2-3 drops for the kids.

** If you already have symptoms, DO NOT drink the grape juice regimen... you will not like the purple mess it creates.**

4. Start drinking Apple Cider Vinegar

The only brand of  ACV I have personally used is the Bragg Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar,and I know it works really well. It helps create an alkaline environment which the virus doesn't like.

2 teaspoons diluted in 6-8 oz water for adults 
1 teaspoon diluted in 6-8 oz water for kids 
Or... you could add it to the grape juice... 

5. Change Clothes as Soon as You Come Home

This will definitely add to the laundry pile, but if it helps reduce the vomit covered laundry, that is a good thing right? 

Get the "germ infested" clothing off before it goes all over the house. For younger kids, put a laundry basket next to where you enter the house, have extra clothes set out and "strip and change" as soon as you get home. For older kids and adults, designate a bathroom t o change in, try to keep it as close to where you enter as you can.   

The trick of course is to put the clothes in the washer right away or area where they are not near anyone. When I worked in the health care field, I put my clothes in a plastic garbage bag and directly in the washer if I couldn't get the load started right away. 

Also, keep the shoes by the door, or even better, out of the house if possible. 

I know there are many, many ways to prevent the stomach flu. Share some more tips in the comments!  

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