If you want to avoid getting the cold and/or flu, it all comes down to your lifestyle. There are a variety of things you can do or avoid doing each day that will reduce your risk as much as possible.
Wash Your Hands Regularly
This continues to be one of the best ways to prevent the cold, flu, and other viruses you get from human contact. If you wash your hands often enough, even minor contact with others who have the cold or flu won’t affect you. It is typically when you shake hands with someone who has the flu virus, then touch your nose or mouth, when you get the virus yourself. Wash your hands whenever you get the opportunity to do so, and use antibacterial soap each time if it is available to you.
Eat a Healthy Diet
You also want to keep getting enough nutrients and vitamins into your system to help build a barrier against bacteria and viruses that lead to the cold and flu. You can do this by eating a healthy, well-balanced diet. Try to go for fresh, whole foods, like fruits, vegetables, meat and poultry, seafood, whole grains, nuts, and seeds. With this making up the bulk of your diet, you will be getting plenty of nutrients to help prevent the cold and flu.
Get Moderate Exercise
Don’t forget about exercise! This isn’t just good for weight loss and improving your heart health, but can actually boost your immune system. When you have a stronger immune system, you have a better resistance to colds and other similar illnesses. Try to walk a few days a week or get other forms of moderate exercise on a regular basis.
Have a Clean Workspace
Not only will washing your hands help to prevent the cold and flu, but having a clean workspace also helps tremendously. In the workplace, no matter where you work, there is a risk of germs and bacteria spreading between co-workers. Try to keep antibacterial wipes at your desk, wiping down surfaces as often as needed, from the edge of your desk, to your phone and keyboard.
Take Your Vitamins
Lastly, if you struggle with your diet, you might not be getting enough nutrients to help prevent the cold and flu viruses from affecting your body. Taking extra vitamins and supplements can ensure you have the proper vitamin E, echinacea, and other nutrients that help you to boost your immune system.
Lisa Ann de Garcia, MA, MEd.