Staying germ-free during the winter can be tricky. We are inside for most of the day, and the changes in temperature can often make people sick. It seems like everyone is hacking and sniffling during the cold and flu season, and can seem impossible to avoid. Luckily, following some helpful and straightforward cold prevention tips can help keep your immune system in tip-top shape, helping you stay healthy all season long.
Having a cold or flu can really slow you down. If you want to avoid getting sick this cold and flu season, check out these helpful winter cold prevention tips.
Watch What You Eat: If you don’t put high-quality food (fuel) into your body, you cannot expect peak performance. Instead, eat plenty of yellow, green, and red fruits and vegetables to give your body the nutrients that it needs to fend off germs and stay healthy.
Wash Your Hands: A simple method that is commonly overlooked. Washing your hands often is an excellent way to help prevent the spread of the cold and flu virus. You never know when you may pick up a germ from somebody around you that’s sick.
Stop Touching Your Face: As previously mentioned, you never know when you may pick up a germ, so the last thing you want to do is touch your face. Viruses can enter your body through your mouth, nose, and eyes, so make sure you keep your hands to yourself.
Don’t Use Your Hands When You Cough or Sneeze: While you were taught to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, using your hands to do so only allows germs to cling to your hands. Instead of using your hands, cough or sneeze into a tissue or into the inside of your elbow.
Get Moving: Getting daily exercise is needed if you want to stay healthy. Aerobic exercise during the winter is a great way to get your heart pumping. Getting the body moving and blood flowing is an excellent way to help fend off the cold and flu virus.
Get Adequate Sleep: Another simple, yet often overlooked aspect of staying healthy during cold and flu season is getting 8-10 hours of sleep a night. Your body will struggle to fend off germs and viruses if it’s tired, so make sure you keep your immune system in tip-top shape by getting adequate sleep each night.
Relax Your Mind and Body: Use the cold winter months as the time to hibernate (as much as possible), and to relax and destress. High amounts of stress on the body can negatively affect the immune system, so it’s no surprise that meditation can help strengthen your body’s defense system.
Stay Away from Smoke: Smoke can dry out the nasal passages and hurt the immune system, so it’s no surprise that heavy smoker’s often experience more frequent and severe colds. Even being around smoke can affect your immune system and cause your cilia, the hairs that line your lungs and nose, to stop working for a short time.