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Stay Healthy During Cold & Flu Season

Updated: Oct 20, 2022

Staying Healthy

Here are a few tips for preventing colds, flu, and promoting overall wellness.

1. Eat Green Vegetables

Green, leafy vegetables are rich in vitamins that help you maintain a balanced diet — and support a healthy immune system. Eating cruciferous vegetables - helps to boost the immune system. What are cruciferous vegetables?

Cruciferous vegetables are part of the Brassica genus of plants. They include the following vegetables, among others:

  • Arugula

  • Bok choy

  • Broccoli

  • Brussels sprouts

  • Cabbage

  • Cauliflower

  • Collard greens

  • Horseradish

  • Kale

  • Radishes

  • Rutabaga

  • Turnips

  • Watercress

  • Wasabi

2. Get Vitamin D

Deficiencies in vitamin D may lead to symptoms such as poor bone growth, cardiovascular problems, and a weak immune system.

Foods that are good sources of vitamin D include egg yolks, mushrooms, salmon, canned tuna, and beef liver.

You can also buy vitamin D supplements at your local health supply store. Choose supplements that contain D3 (cholecalciferol), since it’s better at raising your blood levels of vitamin D.

3. Keep Moving

Staying active by following a regular exercise routine — such as walking three times a week — does more than keep you fit and trim. According to a study published in the journal Neurologic Clinicians, regular exercise also:

-keeps inflammation and chronic disease at bay

-Reduces stress and the release of stress-related hormones

-Accelerates the circulation of disease-fighting white blood cells (WBCs), which helps the body fight off illnesses.

4. Get Enough Sleep

Getting adequate sleep is extremely important if you’ve been exposed to a virus, according to a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Healthy adult participants who slept a minimum of eight hours each night over a two-week period showed a greater resistance to flu and virus. One reason may be that the body releases cytokines during extended periods of sleep. Cytokines are a type of protein. They help the body fight infection by regulating the immune system.

5. Stay Calm

Finding an effective way to regulate personal stress may go a long way toward better overall health. Practicing Yoga, Tai Chi or Meditation helps to relieve stress.

Cortisol, the primary stress hormone, helps the body fight inflammation and disease. The constant release of the hormone in people who are chronically stressed lessens its overall effectiveness. This can result in increased inflammation and disease, as well as have an affect on the immune system. So, stay calm!

6. Drink Herbal Tea

They say there’s nothing a cup of tea can’t fix, and there is some truth to that. With historical roots in East Asia, people of different cultures from around the world have been drinking tea for thousands of years.

But what is herbal tea exactly? In short, tea is the second most popular beverage in the world, next to water. Tea is produced by steeping the young leaves and leaf buds of the plant or herb.

A number of studies have shown that certain teas, such as green tea, ginger tea, hibiscus, and chamomile tea, can boost your immune system, fight off inflammation, promote cardiovascular health, and even prevent the development of certain cancers. These health benefits are associated with specific antioxidants found in tea, known as polyphenols.

7. Eat Your Colors

The colors serve a nutritional purpose. Therefore, it's important to “eat a rainbow” – meaning you eat fruits and vegetables from each color and get a variety of important vitamins and nutrients that can prevent disease. It's recommended that at mealtime, half of your plate is filled with fruits and vegetables.

Colorful vegetables contain many of the vitamins and antioxidants we need – with few calories. Along with maintaining good health, the nutrients in vegetables and fruits work together to protect against cancer, heart disease, vision loss, hypertension, cold, flu and other diseases.

8. Wash Your Hands

It is considered to be one of the most important infection preventing measures. Many infections are spreading by direct contacts. To prevent contamination, good hand washing techniques must be practiced. Hand washing is also the least expensive measure to prevent transmission of nosocomial infections.

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