14 Ways to Avoid Colds and Flu
Every time you shake someones hand, wash yours
But dont stop there. Wash them as much as possible, says Mark Mengel, MD, chair of community and family medicine at Saint Louis University School of Medicine. Running lots of water over your hands will dilute any germs and send them down the drain.
Keep your hands off
Touching your nose and your eyes may hurt you, Mengel says. Those are the most common places for germs to get in.
Go to bed
As if getting enough sleep on a normal basis isnt hard enough, you need more zs when youre feeling under the weather. When youre tired, your body isnt fighting as hard, so Mengel suggests getting 8 to 10 hours a night.
Get your shot
Last years flu-shot shortages are, well, last years shortages, says Jeff Robertson, MD, and chief medical officer for health insurer Regence. Finding flu shots should be easier this year, but you should get one early.
Build up with healthy food
You may think its hard to eat healthy on a regular basis, but eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables supports your immune system, Robertson says. And thats a lot easier than fighting off the flu.
Get those sweats on and exercise, says Ann G. Kulze, MD, CEO and founder of Dr. Ann and Just Wellness. Working out regularly enhances immune function, she explains.
Keep your distance from people displaying symptoms like sneezing and coughing. While that strategy may seem obvious, it applies to more than just strangers and colleagues. Stay away from sick friends and family when possible, Robertson says.
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