Home > Fitness > Sports nutrition Updated 26 February 2014 Flu and sport Forget about "sweating out" a cold or flu. The message is simple: do not train if you have the flu. 0 iStock take a Flexibility test » Receive Health tips » Ask Fitness Expert » Join Health24 on Facebook » 10 minute bikini-ready workout Why you need strength to run Forget about "sweating out" a cold or flu. The message is simple: do not train if you have the flu. Strain on an infected heart muscle (myocarditis, one of the possible complications of flu) may lead to paralysis of this muscle. There have been cases (in young sportspeople) where the only way to survive after myocarditis was a heart transplant. A gradual return to exercise after recovering from flu is best. You should generally not exercise for at least seven days after recovering. Sportspeople must be well aware that some flu medication might contain banned substances such as pseudo-ephedrine, caffeine and others. With easy access of athletes to sport events in the Northern hemisphere, an athlete might be exposed to a flu virus not yet in South Africa. The best way to prevent flu is to get vaccinated with a flu vaccine relevant to the part of the world that you're heading for. Men genuinely get more ill from flu, possibly because their immune systems react more aggressively. NEXT ON HEALTH24X Pumping iron? Try longer breaks between sets for maximum muscle growth 2016-05-11 14:06 More: FitnessSports nutrition advertisement Read Health24’s Comments Policy Comment on this story 0 comments Comments have been closed for this article. Logout Comment 0 characters remaining Share on Facebook Loading comments... From our sponsors Sun protection for all children Understanding your sunscreen The science behind cosmeceuticals Do you know these 5 facts about skincare? Live healthier How loud is too loud? » Heal your hearing Pain relievers linked to hearing loss in women FDA approves balloon device to clear Eustachian tube SEE: Interesting facts about hearing loss Our ears perform quite a complex job – not only are they responsible for helping us hear, they also assist with balance. Get back into your healthy habits » 7 beach sports to keep you active 7 reasons to start running Here's how to get yourself back into exercise after a break 5 ways to kickstart your fitness routine in 2017 With the festive season at an end, getting back into your fitness routine should be a breeze with these five steps.