6 Tips to Preventing Colds and Flu

Washing hands prevents colds and flu

The best way to prevent the flu is to get an annual flu vaccine (see our post here about myths regarding colds and flu). Students can learn how to administer flu shots with Demo Dose® Practice Vaccin. However, even when you get a flu shot, you are still vulnerable to other viruses, including the common cold.

Preventing Colds and Flu

    1. The number one way to prevent getting sick is to wash your hands. Learning good hand hygiene starts young, and should continue your whole life. Henry the Hand says: Don’t cough or sneeze into your hand; use a tissue or the crook of your elbow; and always wash your hands before eating. To teach more about hand hygiene see the Sim Glo and Glo Germ solutions at Pocket Nurse.

    2. Drinking tea is another way to help keep your immune system functioning well. Ginger tea may be especially helpful as ginger has been shown to inhibit certain viruses from attaching to cells. In addition, drinking hot tea and inhaling the steam stimulates hair follicles around the nose to move germs out of the body more effectively.

    3. Make good choices. Diets that are too low in protein can deplete immune function. To keep colds at bay, a diet rich in eggs, yogurt, and fish may be helpful. In a study published in Clinical Nutrition, Greek yogurt was found to be especially beneficial.

    Too much alcohol is a no-no if you’re trying to prevent illness. Heavy drinking lowers the immune system, dehydrates the body, and leaves one more vulnerable to viruses and infection.

    4. Get enough rest and relaxation. Learning how to de-stress with meditation can help keep you healthy. Researchers from the University of Madison found that people who meditated took 76 percent fewer sick days than those who didn’t. Even if you don’t decide to meditate, aim to get seven to eight hours of sleep a night, which helps immune function.

    5. Multivitamins. A good multivitamin that includes vitamin C and zinc can help general health functioning when combined with a healthy diet. Look for foods and vitamins that include vitamin D, too, or try to get out in the sun on a regular basis. Vitamin D boosts immunity to colds and flu.

    6. Keep it clean. Regular cleaning of much-used and touched surfaces will keep germs away, too. Clean off keyboards and door knobs, and if you use a gym, make sure to wipe down equipment. Antimicrobial wipes are useful to have to hand.

Resources:

10 Ways to Prevent Cold and Flus This Winter, Newsmax Health

Yogurt: role in health and active aging, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

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