How Can I Avoid Getting The Flu?

Last year's flu shots missed the mark. Influenza viruses mutate, making it difficult for researchers to always help us with immunization. This year things are expected to be different. The vaccine has been completely revised, and expectations are that it should be highly effective. It seems we should all consider getting our flu vaccine this year to prevent missed days of work and misery from flu symptoms.

For those of you who entirely shun vaccines, and certainly for all of the rest of us as well, other measures should be taken to avoid getting the flu. These measures should not to be taken lightly considering the fact that we all want to avoid down time and the potential for complications.

Boost Your Immunities

Normally, our immune systems can handle viruses and bacteria. The problem is, we're subject to stress, lack of sleep and poor eating habits that can weaken our defenses.

Simple measures, such as ensuring going early to bed, eating five servings of fruits and vegetables each day, daily doses of vitamin D (from supplements and sunshine) and vitamin C from food sources can go a long way for preventing colds and flu this season.

Stress management with exercise, yoga and even simple breathing techniques are very effective for promoting overall health, well-being and good immunity. Regular physical activity of any type helps keep immunity intact.

Supplements, such as vitamin C, have not been shown to work as well as whole foods. There is a synergy provided by food that just can't be synthesized into pill form. Exceptions include fish oil capsules, olive leaf extracts and vitamin D, which is difficult to obtain from food sources. Spend your money on nutrition--it's likely to work better for you than supplements alone.
Vitamn D supplements are currently recommended for children as well as adults. If you haven't added them to your daily regimen, you may be missing our on an array of health benefits, including better immunity.

Olive leaf extract is potentially a good anti-viral agent, and has been proven to have anti-bacterial properties.

Avoid Sick People, Wash Your Hand and Clean Your Work Area

It sounds simple, but how many of us have dragged ourselves to work, believing we're essential? Well, you're not alone--your co-workers do it too.

If you're sick, stay home. If you're a manager, send employees home if they're running a fever, coughing or sniffling. Flu is highly contagious, and it's not worth introducing viral illness into the workplace. It's one of the most simple ways to avoid flu--stay away from sick people.

Frequent hand washing is a totally underestimated defense against spread of viruses and infection. Wash in any public place before you leave. Many people have gotten into the habit of using anti-bacterial wipes on shopping cart handles--not a bad idea, but no need to overuse. Some exposure to viruses and bacteria actually help us against getting sick when we're exposed.
Finally, avoid flu by keeping your hands away from your face.

Keep your work area clean. No need to share keyboards and telephones, especially during flu season. If it is necessary, use an anti-bacterial spray, alcohol wipe or approved cleanser to minimize spread of viruses in the workplace.

With a bit of conscientious behavior, avoiding the flu might just become a bit easier for all of us.

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