Each year, flu seems almost inevitable during the cold months of autumn and winter. However, having good health habits like covering your mouth when you cough and washing your hands often can help stop the spread of germs and prevent respiratory illnesses like the flu.
1. Try to avoid getting close to people who are sick. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
2. Wash your hands frequently. Flu viruses are spread by droplets from infected people when they sneeze, blow their nose, or wipe away secretions from their nose or eyes. During flu season, everyone should be encouraged to keep their hands out of their mouths, avoid rubbing their eyes and wash their hands thoroughly several times a day, especially before meals.
3. Eat a healthy diet rich in vitamins C and E. Foods containing these vitamins are believed to be helpful in supporting the immune system. Foods rich in vitamin E include sunflower and corn oils, sunflower seeds, and nuts such as almonds and peanuts. You can get your daily vitamin C from foods like orange juice, citrus fruits, broccoli and green peppers. And make an effort to reduce your intake of concentrated sugar (e.g. soda, candy) because excessive sugar impairs the immune response.
4. Get a good night’s sleep. Lack of sleep may profoundly inhibit your immune system. Get a full night’s sleep to keep your body’s natural defenses at optimum efficiency.
5. Stay hydrated. Increasing your water intake will help you stay healthy and lessen the chance of you coming down with flu. When you are feeling under the weather, drinking extra fluids prevents dehydration caused by fever, loosens mucus, and keeps your throat moist. Warm liquids are preferable, and there is some evidence that inhaling steam early in the course of a cold or flu may reduce the spread of viruses in your upper respiratory tract.
6. Cover up when you sneeze or cough. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or arm when coughing or sneezing. It prevents infectious droplets to be spread in air.
7. Exercise regularly. Not only can regular exercise lower stress, but research indicates that exercise can stimulate the immune system and promote healthy sleep. In a recent study reported in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, scientists found that modest exercise may prevent the elderly from getting colds and flu.
8. Keep Oscillococcinum® readily available. Oscillococcinum (Oscillo®), is a homeopathic medicine which reduces the duration of flu-like symptoms (body aches, headache, fever, chills). Stay healthy during the flu season with Oscillococcinum! Oscillo is available in 6, 12 or 30 doses.
9. Listen to your body. If you do come down with a cold or flu, take it easy and take a break. Spending excessive energy steals valuable resources from the immune system. Even attempting to perform normal activities at work or school may be too much. Besides, if you believe you’re coming down with flu, probably the best thing you can do for friends and family is to not expose them unnecessarily to the virus.
10. Seek help if you get worse and talk to your doctor. Get professional advice if you are at risk for complications from flu. If your symptoms become significantly worse after the first three days of illness, especially if your fever subsides and then returns, be sure to seek medical attention right away.
Oscillococcinum may not be right for everyone. Always read and follow the label.
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