It’s cold and flu season - and we’re all petrified that we’re going to catch something that will lay us up for days. Here are 6 tricks to keep you healthy, so that you don’t have to lock yourself in your room until it gets warm outside.
For many, this is a constant struggle to begin with - junk food is just so convenient! But, not only will eating well be good for your health and body, it’s excellent for your immune system. Try to load your diet with vitamins A, C, D3 and B12. The following foods can help:
Cold weather tends to make us want to hibernate, but we’re here to tell you that you must resist the urge to snuggle up under a thick blanket and go on a Netflix bender! Moderate exercise (roughly 20 minutes a day, five or more days a week) keeps your immune system active, improves your circulation (which, incidentally, will keep you warm) and boosts your mood. So get up and get active, just like you would in the warmer months!
Water is the source of life, and during cold season, it’s like a ward against disease. After all, our bodies are about 60% water (if you’re an average adult male anyway). Your skin needs it to stay smooth; your organs need it to work efficiently; and your immune system needs it so that your blood will keep circulating. Docs suggest drinking 1/2 your weight in ounces every day - example: a 160 lb person should drink 80 oz of water daily. Added plus, drinking water will actually make you feel more awake. Trust us!
And no, we don’t mean be cold. We mean relax! Stress lowers the effectiveness of your immune system and makes it easier for you to get sick. So if your boss is bugging you for a project or the kids are keeping you so busy you think your hair is going to fall out, take a step back, lock yourself in a quiet room and get meditating (or book a massage, or do some yoga, whatever helps keep you relaxed). It’s for your health! It’s for their safety! Not sure you have the time to set aside? Try diffusing some stress relieving essential oils
while you work.
It’s amazing how many people ignore this incredibly important part of life. A good night’s rest isn’t just a suggestion, it’s a necessity for everyone! Lack of sleep lowers your immune system, making you susceptible to any nasty bug that might blow your way. Not to mention the fact that it makes you feel tired, cranky and very unproductive. Experts suggest you get 7 - 9 hours of sleep each night; and that you keep to a strict schedule - go to bed and wake up at the same times every day.
The final trick is a well-known one - wash your hands. Do this after you use the bathroom, before you eat, after you touch a public surface (like the subway handrail or the doorknob at work). The best practices for hand washing are as follows:
- Wet your hands
- Lather with soap for 20 - 30 seconds (don’t forget to wash under your fingernails)
- Rinse well
Washing your hands limits the transfer of harmful bacteria. It also makes you feel clean, so that’s a plus!