According to Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare (MHLW) during the period of 14-20 January, the number of influenza cases in the country has exceeded 110,000.
Schools and facilities for the elderly across Japan have been pushing a traditional three pronged attack against the flu virus. First, hand washing is a no-brainer (or at least it out to be). Also, anyone who has been to Japan has probably experienced the country’s love of surgical masks.
The third line of defense, however, is rather unique to Japan: gargling. Although gargling is embraced worldwide as a soothing massage for throats sore from overuse or illness, in Japan it has been widely regarded for generations as a preventative measure against cold or flu viruses.