Winter Wellness Tips

Each winter we are plagued by the possibility of catching the flu, and while this virus has taken the backseat to COVID-19 both should be a concern to us all. In order to avoid the flu and coronavirus, it is important to maintain optimal health and keep clear of germs and bacteria that may cause illnesses. To help keep you and your family in good health, we’ve compiled a list of wellness tips that are easy to follow and carry out beyond winter.

1. Wash your hands frequently.

While this seems like such an elementary tip, frequent hand washing is one of the most important steps anyone can take to avoid getting sick. Although we can’t see them, there are germs all around us, from the meat we cook to the keyboards we type on, and when we don’t wash our hands after interacting with these things we put ourselves and others at risk. To better explain, many of us frequently unknowingly touch our eyes, nose and mouth, which are open portals for germs to make us sick if we rub them with dirty hands. According to the CDC, washing your hands can prevent diarrhea-related illnesses by 30% and respiratory infections by 20%, so do yourself and others a favor by keeping clean.

2. Avoid contact with your T-zone

As previously stated, we continuously touch our “t-zone” or eyes, nose and mouth region which can make us victims of illnesses even if we think our hands are clean. While we would like to think our hands are squeaky clean as well as the surfaces we interact with, but this unfortunately is not always the case, so in order to stay healthy it’s best to let this habit die.

3. Eat a balanced diet and exercise

According to Harvard Health, priming your immune system is an effective way to fight diseases and this can be done by maintaining a balanced diet and exercising regularly. Many of us lead busy lives which may make it difficult to find time to exercise, but the Mayo Clinic suggests 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity is enough to keep you healthy and can even be broken down into 5 minute intervals. As far as diet goes, aim for a colorful plate with a variety of vegetables, proteins and nutrient-dense grains; and if you’re short on time during the week, give meal prepping a try!

4. Wear a mask

While the coronavirus pandemic has popularized mask wearing on a global level, wearing a mask has been a sanitary practice for centuries to avoid contagious bacteria. Therefore, on top of avoiding COVID-19 wearing a mask can also minimize the risk of catching the flu. If you’re having difficulty finding a mask, surely we can point you in the right direction.

5. Keep a clean home

This is not a parental slight at you to clean up your living space, but a genuine reminder that bacteria and viruses may be living rent-free in our homes and put our health at risk. The flu virus can live on surfaces for up to 48 hours and the coronavirus can live up to 5 days on some surfaces, so the CDC recommends routinely cleaning surfaces with products that contain chlorine, hydrogen peroxide, detergents, iodophors and alcohols. Vacuuming and changing air filters are also important tasks, especially for those with respiratory conditions like asthma that can be aggravated by germs and annoying dust mites.

6. Get a flu shot

Flu shots are a great way to avoid the flu, and when paired with the previous steps can leave you feeling protected all season long. For information on where to schedule a flu shot, check out our article “Flu Shots For All”.

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