January 15th, 2005
By Sal Roach
A few months back, we reported the beginning of Flu season #&45; and with it,
a shortage in vaccines to help combat the infection. It turns out that those
with severe flues are comes a greater risk of suffering from Dehydration.
That#&8217;s why they have water fountains all over the schoolyard, regardless
of the cost for Cootie Shots.
Because of the severe loss of fluids from vomiting or loose stool when you have
the flu, your body lacks the essential fluids to keep you going. While minor
side effects of this can range from a dry throat to extreme lethargy, the effects
of dehydration on already existing medical conditions in those with weak immune
systems can be devastating.
Recently, Todd Harrison, a patient a Kaiser Hospital in Los Angeles, was brought
in to treat a massive amount of dehydration he underwent as a result of a recent
bout with the flu. Because he already has diabetes, the dehydration triggered a
state of malnutrition, which in turn set forth an infection of Hallux Osteo, a
slight deterioration of the bones.
According to Nurse Colleen Donohue, the one who had been treating Mr. Harrison,
#&34;His immune system was suppressed because of lack of liquids. His fighter
T cells were at a dangerously low level. Coupled with a fever that set forth
the dehydration, it set him up for a number of other problems.#&34;
At the hospital ward which was stacked with similar cases, mainly amongst the
elderly, she was extremely busy and dashed out the door before I could get to a
follow up question. The nurses run the show after the diagnosis is made.
Later, after she had minute to talk, she explained that #&34;With dehydration
and malnutrition, there is a higher risk of bronchial infections. Slight wounds
can become greater problems, and we may even seem some deterioration of the
So what does all of this mean? No, we are not telling you that if you catch the
flu you#&8217;re going to end up in the hospital with harsh medical disorders,
but the need to keep replenishing with liquids and as much solid food as you
can muster during these periods is essential. Even if you#&8217;re only eating
bananas and chicken soup, any amount will strengthen your immune system and make
you steadfast against infection.
Since the Tsunami#&8217;s at the end of last year, The WHO (World health
Organization) has predicted that a number equal to the 150,000 casualties
caused by the actual disaster could die because of disease and infection.
Many of that astronomical number will do so because of dehydration or
deficiencies caused by a direct result of dehydration.
More than half of our body weight is water, so if that is not maintained,
there is a floodgate of infection that can open and spread throughout your
body within days. Make sure that the liquids you are consuming during this
extended flu season are low in sugar, as excessive amounts of sugar causes
the secession of water weight.
Water weight is the easier to get rid of, which is the reason that when you
diet, you initially lose 5#&45;6 pounds, but then find it difficult to lose
more. All you have lost is the water weight.
So please, keep refreshed during these months and continue to lend your
support to the relief efforts for the tens of thousands that are depending
on the world#&8217;s help to deliver them a clean cup of water each day.
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