Things You Can Do To Avoid Influenza

There are several things you can do if you want to avoid the flu.  Living a healthy lifestyle will greatly reduce our risk of getting a cold or influenza.   This article will explain a few things anyone can do to promote good health and prevent illnesses.

Woman with a cold

Good Hand Washing Is Essential

Washing your hands frequently is an important habit to prevent the flu and other illnesses.

Everything we touch has germs on it, which means our hands are always going to have a lot of bacteria that we can't see..  This includes objects like phones, door knobs, light fixtures, and so on.  

Hands should be washed in warm water with soap to eliminate bacteria.  Rub the hands well and also between the fingers.  A good wash should take at least twenty seconds.

Handwashing should be done before handling any food.  An antibacterial soap is not necessary, however, liquid soaps are the best to use.  A bar of hand soap will collect a lot of bacteria, particularly if it is sitting in a wet environment.   


Good Handwashing Technique

Foods to Eat For Better Health

Proper nutrition helps to boost the immune system and gives us more energy.  All fruit and vegetables are good to eat, but those with vitamin C are particularly helpful for flu prevention.  Since this vitamin is not stored in the body, we need to consume foods that contain it every day.  Citrus fruit, peppers, broccoli and cabbage are good sources.  They do need to be eaten raw, because cooking will destroy the vitamin.  

Vitamin D is another essential vitamin to help keep us healthy.  In recent years a lot of research has been done, which indicates adequate intake of this vitamin is absolutely necessary to fight colds, infection and the flu.

The sun is the best source, although if you live in a climate where the winters are cold you may need to take a supplement to get enough each day.  Fish does contain some Vitamin D, and it is added to milk and some orange juice brands.  If you need a supplement, it is recommended that you take Vitamin D3. 

Sugar should be avoided as much as possible, as it depresses the immune system.  If you want something sweet, fruit is a much better option than cookies, cakes, and similar food.  The natural sugar in fruit is much different than processed sugar.  Fruit also has nutritional benefits not found in sugar.   This also includes corn syrup and artificial sweeteners.  


Other Tips To Prevent the Flu

Getting enough exercise helps to enhance the immune system.  It is not necessary to do aerobics every day, unless of course this is something you would enjoy.   A good brisk walk, lasting at least 30 minutes, is enough to get you started on improving your physical condition.  Regular exercise is important for our well being and helps us to sleep better at night.  We also need enough rest to prevent the flu, as our body cannot fight off infections and illnesses as efficiently when we are over tired.  

Most stores and public places now have waterless hand cleaning dispensers by the front door and it is advisable to use them.  If you should have to cough or sneeze and don't have a tissue handy, cover with your arm to prevent bacteria from becoming airborne.  Of course, wash your hands as soon as you can also.