Surviving Cold and Flu Season: Minimizing Your Chances of Illness
It’s that time of year again when we all seem to be focused on how to stay healthy with so many people around us fighting colds and flu. One thing is for sure, it’s not an easy task. What makes it even harder is the fact that there are so many myths about how to fight colds and flu that it can get pretty confusing.
One important factor to understand is that although both of them are caused by viruses, having a cold is not the same as having the flu. Yes, some of the symptoms are common but the flu can be much more serious and should be treated as so.
Can Anything Help to Fight Colds and Flu?
Wash your hands.
According to Nancy Elder, MD, director of research at the University of Cincinnati in the Department of Family and community medicine, “wash your hands a lot and encourage those around you to wash their hands.”
Keep your immune system strong.
A weak immune system makes it easy for a viral infection to attack so it’s vital to eat a diet rich in vitamin and minerals to keep your immune system strong. Adding supplements can help in filling in gaps where you may be lacking.
Get a flu vaccine.
It won’t work for a cold, but doctors say our first line of defense against the flu is the vaccine. Talk to your medical professional to find out if it’s right for you.
Stay home when you have the first signs of being sick.
Whether you’re a student or have a job, the best way to avoid spreading the cold and flu virus is to stay home and take care of yourself.
Get your rest.
We know sleep is important for health and not getting enough can leave us run down and exhausted, which also leave us with a weak immune system. Getting enough sleep can keep you healthy.
Wipe down surfaces.
Studies have shown that viruses can be anywhere, including household and office surfaces. To minimize your exposure, wipe down counters, tables, phones, doorknobs, computers, keyboards and everywhere we touch things. This in itself is no guarantee, but every little bit helps.
Working out and being fit increases our immune system so having a regular fitness routine, along with a nutrient-rich diet can help to keep viruses at bay.
Our bodies are made up of about 60% water. Staying hydrated is vital to health and is equally important for boosting the immune system.
Keep your distance.
It’s important to protect your personal space, but especially when colds and flu are running rampant. This along with other precautions, such as hand washing and a healthy lifestyle, this can help in escaping sickness.
There are no guarantees when it comes to viruses because we can’t know everywhere they are hiding, but taking steps to get and stay healthy plus adding additional precautions can go a long way in helping you to avoid coming down with a cold or even worse, the flu.
Health & Wellness Writer Bio
Maria Pease is a freelance health & wellness content writer based in Southport, North Carolina. She has written about health & wellness for more than twenty-five years and has partnered with a variety of companies doing the most amazing work. She loves being able to write about health topics that can change lives for the better.