With thousands of health products making claims about their miraculous immune-boosting properties, how is a gal to know what really prevents you from getting sick? We’re breaking it down so you can stay healthy this cold and flu season.
Here’s what really prevents you from getting sick:
The Flu Shot
For the most part, it really works. Flu shots are recommended for almost everyone, including babies 6 months or older and pregnant women. Flu shots are available at many clinics, doctor’s offices and pharmacies. Check with your insurance company to find out if yours is covered free of charge.
Wash Your Hands
Here’s something that is definitely free – washing your hands! Spending 20 seconds lathering with antibacterial soap and rinsing with warm water, then drying your hands thoroughly can help wash away tons of germs that might otherwise cause colds or the flu.
Relax and Sleep
Lack of sleep and stress both significantly reduce your immune system’s defense capacity. Make relaxation and “me time” a priority and get the sleep you need, whether that is 7, 8 or 9 hours. Not taking the time for these healthy habits could cost you lots of lost time and productivity being sick.
Staying warm and cozy indoors is so tempting but germs are constantly circulating around your home and office. Step outside every day to get fresh air and give yourself a break from indoor germs.
When you exercise, even if it’s a short walk, your body boosts its germ-fighting abilities by increasing pathogen-killing cells. Plus, exercise offers a host of other body-loving benefits as well.
Vitamin C and Zinc
Both Vitamin C and Zinc have proven to help reduce the length and intensity of colds. Take Vitamin C as soon as you feel the slighted twinge of a cold coming on. Zinc can help even the cold hits in full force. Echinacea and other herbal remedies have not shown as much success as these vitamins.
Keep Surfaces Clean
The flu virus can last for up to 8 hours on surfaces. So if you or your children bring it into your house, everyone is at risk. Wipe down surfaces as much as possible and keep your hands away from your face unless they are washed.
We hope you have a healthy and happy fall and winter!!
Sources: WebMD and Health