How to protect yourself from getting sick during flu season: five rules from doctors

Yulia PoteriankoSociety
How to protect yourself from getting sick during flu season: five rules from doctors

Cold and wet days in late autumn bring with them such troubles as frequent colds and flu. Ukrainian epidemiologists have already warned about the start of the new SARS season and ask people to visit doctors for flu vaccinations for prevention.

Meanwhile, Eat This, Not That! has compiled a list of 5 medical recommendations on how to maintain your health to avoid catching a cold.

Three pillars of a healthy life

The three pillars of any person's health are nutrition, sleep, and physical activity. Dr. Mike Ball, a health education specialist, reminds us that things like stress, overwork, overeating, and being overweight are not good for the body's immune system. And the recommendations for overcoming these problems remain simple and standard: eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, maintain a healthy weight, drink alcohol in moderation, refrain from smoking, get enough sleep every night, and minimize stress. For example, with the onset of cold weather, you are more likely to crave more high-calorie foods, but the desire to go for a run or even a walk becomes less. Use the statement that you are doing all this to take care of yourself, to do something good and useful for yourself to motivate yourself.

Hand hygiene

There's a reason that at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, every iron was reminding us to wash our hands more often and do it properly. Hand hygiene is a very effective way to prevent the spread of respiratory infections. Especially if you keep even clean hands away from your face - nose, mouth, and eyes. Dr. Bohl recommends combining hygiene procedures with vaccination. The vaccine will help you to get over the disease more easily, even if you catch it.


Viral infections are transmitted only through fairly close contact, so the less you are around people, the less likely you are to meet someone who will "give" you a sick day with a fever and cough. Try to avoid crowded places, and don't go into a crowd unless you have to. At the same time, listen to yourself: if you feel symptoms of SARS, stay home. Don't be the bad person who makes several strangers catch a cold, even in theory. And always agree when your friends ask you to postpone plans because you're not feeling well. It's better to voluntarily miss one party than to be forced to miss everything for a week, says Dr. Ball.

Echinacea, vitamin C, and vitamin D

One of the hypotheses for why the incidence of SARS and influenza increases during the cold season is due to a lack of sunlight, which means we get less vitamin D, which is beneficial for the immune system. That's why Dr. Ball recommends having a blood test to find out if you have a deficiency. If you are, consult your doctor, who will prescribe a suitable supplement. As for echinacea, it won't help cure the common cold, but according to some studies, it will reduce the risk of infection. Thus, it should be consumed, for example, in the form of tea. Vitamin C, meanwhile, will be useful in the prevention of those who engage in regular physical activity.

Taking care of yourself

If you still can't protect yourself from the common cold, be lenient with yourself. Pamper yourself with warm teas to your heart's content, rest, and take a nap in the middle of the day. If you love chicken noodle soup and have an appetite, be sure to eat at least a serving - there is research that shows it is actually good for colds. Don't tolerate the symptoms, relieve the pain, use decongestants to help facilitate nasal breathing, and take appropriate cough medications - dry or wet - as recommended by your doctor. The cold will go away in a few days, and you will feel better during this period.

As OBOZREVATEL previously reported, doctors warned of the danger of simultaneous coronavirus and flu inf ection and named an effective remedy.

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