Tips for Staying Healthy This Cold and Flu Season
Cold and flu season really thrives around Thanksgiving and hangs around until spring. Part of the problem is that people who seldom see one another get together for the holidays and share more than cheer. To keep from getting sick and then spreading the illness among your family and friends, you need to protect yourself.
Take Preventive Action
Try to get your flu vaccine early in October so your immune system has time to build a solid defense. Sometimes flu vaccines are available in high schools, so check with your school nurse to see if they will be available in yours. If people around you are sick, become a loner for a while. Wash your hands regularly and use disinfecting cleaners around your home and school. In order to prevent the flu, it’s important to get a flu vaccine, stay home if you’re sick, wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Make sure to also keep your mouth covered when you cough and sneeze. Behave responsibly if we feel yourself coming down with any illness. Once you’ve had your vaccine, pay special attention to any odd symptoms such as a sore throat or drippy nose. If you notice a fever and headache, stay home from school.
Eat Foods Rich in Vitamins C and E
Maintaining good health for yourself when those around you are sick will be easier if you eat foods that support your immune system. In addition to taking Vitamin C, make sure to eat foods that are high in this crucial disease-fighting nutrient, including oranges and tomatoes. Increasing your Vitamin E intake will also help, so be sure to enjoy peanut butter and avocados. Try to add fermented foods to your diet. Some of these are live-culture yogurt, sauerkraut, kefir and any dish with a vinegar sauce or dressing. Live-culture foods are good for your gut when your immune system is working hard to protect you from viruses. Avoid inflammatory foods such as anything that contains white flour or processed sugar. Not only are these things good for keeping you well, but they will help make you healthier in general and could possibly even help your performance if you play school sports.
Keep a Clean House
Flu viruses can be transmitted through the air. They can also be left on surfaces by someone who just coughed or sneezed on their hand. To reduce your risk of this contact transmission, pay attention to doorknobs and light switches when helping your parents clean your house. It doesn’t take a lot of water or effort. A simple disinfecting wipe can be used to sanitize cupboard handles, hand railings, and phones. When you’re at school, you don’t really have the same control over your environment, but what you can do is bring a mini hand sanitizer with you to use whenever you touch public surfaces.
Cold and flu season always comes around, but you can protect your family and yourself from picking it up the illness this year by getting your flu shot, eating right, and keeping your house clean. To reduce the risk of transmission, disinfecting wipes can be used once a day on shared surfaces that get a lot of contact.
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