7 Tip for Immunity Health During Flu Season
Late autumn brings changing leaves, spooky decorations, darker days, and, you guessed it, the flu. Stay healthy this flu season with some of No.2’s favorite immune boosting practices.
1. Practice Good Hygiene
Health hygiene is essential to avoiding any virus. This means washing your hands regularly, and using hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available. Avoid touching your face with unclean hands as this is one way germs get into your system. Covering your coughs and sneezes will protect people in your community from coming into contact with germs. Teaching your children the importance of covering coughs and sneezes is another important way to practice health hygiene and decrease the risk of spreading germs in your home.
2. Stay Hydrated
Maintaining a strong immune system is key in preventing illness. Staying hydrated will allow your blood stream to properly transport nutrients to each organ system. Proper hydration will increase lymphatic drainage and clear out germs and waste. Make sure to increase your water intake if you are drinking caffeine or alcohol.
3. Eat Right
While there is no special food that can prevent sickness, a healthy and varied diet can maintain your immune system by avoiding immunodeficiency due to malnutrition. Micronutrients that have been linked to the growth and function of immune cells include: iron (beans, nuts, red meat), vitamin A (carrots, apricots, bell peppers), vitamin C (oranges, strawberries, tomatoes), vitamin D (salmon, egg yolks), vitamin E (seeds, peanut butter, vegetable oil), and zinc (whole grains, milk).
Another way to maintain your immune system is regular exercise. Exercise increases your blood flow, helps clear bacteria out of your airways, strengthens antibodies to fight infection, and reduces stress hormones. Regular exercise can reduce chronic inflammation, allowing the immune system to perform better.
5. Get Enough Sleep
A good night’s sleep is important in keeping yourself healthy this flu season. In a recent study, scientists discovered that good quality sleep has the potential to improve T-cell functioning. T-cells are a type of immune cells that fight off intracellular pathogens such as, the flu, HIV, herpes, and cancer cells.
6. Stay Home When Sick
We’ve all learned the importance of community health in the past year and a half, so stay home if you aren’t feeling well. Not only is this a common courtesy to friends, family, coworkers, and fellow citizens, it also will lower the chances of spreading the virus and causing possible reinfection. Speak to your school or workplace regarding their sick days policy, and encourage loved ones to stay home when not feeling well.
7. Keep Common Spaces Clean
Disinfecting surfaces is another way to prevent the spread of the flu this season. Wipe down common surfaces such as tables, doorknobs, sinks, toilets, and toys. Check with your school or workplace to make sure they have a protocol in place for disinfecting common spaces.
Keep yourself and your family safe in the coming cold months by maintaining practices that boost your immune system and protect the health of the community. And if you do catch the sniffles use No.2 toilet paper to blow your nose!