Shingles (herpes zoster) is typically contracted in conjunction with chicken pox. This potentially dangerous virus can remain dormant in your body for up to 60 years, according to Dr. Keith Armitage, department vice president for education and infectious disease expert for UH Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio.
Because you typically contract chicken pox when you’re young, we are beginning to see the Shingles virus become active in Baby Boomers.
Baby Boomers in Poor Health are at Bigger Risk
Shingles typically presents in patients with a weakened immune system. While age may often give Baby Boomers wisdom that the younger generations have not yet gained, the years also take their toll. Without careful attention to your health, the vigor of youth can give way to a weakened immune system.
In many instances, this can be attributed to some, if not all, of the following factors:
- B12 Deficiency
- Recent Illness
- Excessive Stress
- Major Trauma
- Poor Diet
- Lack of Sleep
- Decreased Activity Level
Shingles Poses Serious Health Concerns
Shingles presents itself as a rash or blisters. These can be relatively mild and contained, especially if dealt with immediately.
However, in severe cases, shingles can lead to a bacterial superinfection and cause transient neurological deficits. It can cause individuals to develop skin ulcers, put them at risk for strep and staph infections, and inflict long-lasting pain.
How to Treat Shingles Naturally
One of the absolute best ways to naturally treat shingles, is by boosting your immune system. You can do so with a well-balanced, vitamin rich diet. The following are some of the best foods to incorporate into your regular meals:
- Garlic & Onion - Though not wonderful for your breath, online is high in allicin, which boosts your immune function.
- Oranges - Make sure your plate is filled with color. Orange and yellow fruits are high in Vitamin C, an essential vitamin to maintaining your health.
- Green, Leafy Vegetables - Leafy greens are high in iron, beta-carotene, and calcium. All three of these elements help your immune system function properly.
- Turmeric - Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory. Reducing inflammation helps your blood circulate normally so you’re not organs aren’t deprived of key nutrients.
What to Not Eat if You’re Worried About Shingles
Some foods are well-known triggers for heightening depression and weakening your immune system. If you are worried about shingles, it’s best to avoid the following food:
- Alcohol - Alcohol is a poison. And, your body can only wage battles on so many fronts.
- Sugar - Sugar can decrease your white blood cells, which help your body fight off infection.
- Caffeine - Caffeine causes your body to become dehydrated, making it more difficult for you immune system to function properly.
- Carbohydrates - Your body processes carbohydrates into sugar, decreasing your white blood cells in the same way.
- Fried Foods - Fried foods introduce harmful chemicals into your body and can clog your arteries, hampering your body’s ability to function properly.
Give Your Immune System an Additional Boost with B12 Injections
A B12 deficiency can make can contribute to everything from a weakened immune system and depression to difficulty losing weight and feeling lethargic. Because our digestive tracts are so inefficient, it can be difficult to get the optimal amount of B12. With a B12 injection, you are able to skip the digestive tract and deliver this key vitamin directly into your bloodstream.
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