Whether you’re a kid or a grown-up, getting sick sucks. We’d all prefer to avoid illness as much as possible. While that’s easier said than done, there are several ways to reduce the chances of coming down with a bad cold or worse this winter:
Eat a balanced diet
A well-functioning immune system depends greatly on diet. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables is key to boosting immunity. The same goes for limiting your intake of processed foods and those loaded with fats and sugars. While a balanced diet doesn’t guarantee you’ll avoid getting sick this winter, it’s safe to say it plays a significant role in decreasing the chances of that happening.
Practice good hygiene
It starts with washing your hands several times a day, followed by keeping your hands away from your face. The same goes for everyone else in your household. For instance, it’s a good time for your kids to stop finger sucking as soon as possible. From there, it’s a matter of maintaining the same basic hygienic practices we’ve followed for years: regularly wash, keep a clean home, and block your face whenever coughing or sneezing. Again, make sure the other members of your household do the same.
Regular exercise is another factor that plays a significant role in the strength of our immune systems. Again, it doesn’t make us impervious to infectious disease, but it helps our bodies do a better job of fending off dangerous germs. Thirty minutes of moderate exercise every day is enough to make a big difference. If that’s too much to ask, consider high-intensity workouts designed to be done in less than 10 minutes.
Get plenty of sleep
Sleep is critical for maintaining a well-functioning immune system. Your body needs it to run routine maintenance, including tending to the systems responsible for preventing and fighting infectious diseases. That means anywhere between six to eight hours for most adults. Getting a healthy amount of sleep is easier said than done when pushed to the brink at home and work, but it’s imperative for reducing the chances of getting sick this winter.
Practice social distancing
While the common cold, influenza, and other familiar infections remain something to consider, most people reading this article are thinking about COVID-19. With this in mind, individuals must follow social distancing guidelines for the foreseeable future. Whether it’s grocery shopping, going to the museum, or attending a party, folks ought to be at least six feet away from each other at all times. There should also be a limit on the number of people at a given event or in a given space.
Wear a mask
Science says face masks are incredibly effective at reducing the spread of infectious disease. If you want to avoid getting sick this winter, wear a mask whenever you’re in close contact with other people indoors. That means wearing it correctly and not letting your mask dip below your nose.
It’s safe to say most people prefer to avoid getting sick. It’s equally safe to assume most people know it’s only a matter of time until they come down with something. With that said, there are ways to decrease the chances of that happening. Put them to practice, and you’ll do your best to avoid getting sick this winter.