Like it or not, cold and flu season is straight ahead and coming fast. Along with the great things about fall/winter – cooler weather, crisp breezes, fall colors, great holidays – often comes runny noses, fevers, coughing and sore throats.
Odds are good that everyone is going to get at least one illness between now and the spring, but there are things you can do to avoid getting sick. Here are some tried and true tricks, as well as a few that are not proven but anecdotal.
What would you add to this list?
- It sounds remedial, but as much as you can, avoid others who are ill. That sounds like a no-brainer – no one really wants to be around those who are sick, but the reality is, people come to work every day ill. Stay at least 3 feet away from anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
- By the same token, if you are ill, stay home. As important as you are in your job, no one is indispensable and you won’t perform at an adequate level anyway. So stay home and…
- REST. As much as you can, rest. This applies to you when you are healthy, as well. Sleep is your body’s way of repairing itself, and if you don’t allow your body to relax and rejuvenate, you will burn out and then your body has no defenses to fight off germs.
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet. If you fill your body with junk food, you aren’t getting the vitamins and minerals your body needs to be able to resist infection. Pay special attention to Vitamin C and Vitamin B. Vitamin C is a great immune booster, and Vitamin B helps your body fight stress.
- Consider supplementing your diet with fish oil supplements. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish oils, have been proven to reduce inflammation in your body, and help to ward off the colds and flu to which we are all exposed.
- Drink plenty of water. Staying well hydrated keeps the tissues of the respiratory system moist and helps the immune system work properly.
- Get your flu shot. October/November is the perfect time to do so.
- Wash your hands often, and thoroughly. Your hands are only one very small way that germs enter your immune system, but they are often a trigger for many people, who touch their mouths and noses multiple times in one day.
- If you have a sore throat, consider hot tea with honey and lemon, a tried and true “old fashioned” remedy that actually has scientific backing.
- This repeats from above – but REST. Your body doesn’t have the ability to fight off infection if it doesn’t have enough energy to perform the regular functions correctly.
September 27th, 2010