The flu: what can you really say about it? It’s never good to feel under the weather, and the flu is the one of the worst common illnesses to pick up. Not only that, but serious cases can also end in hospitalization – or worse. Unless you stay at home and never go outside, you’ll never be completely safe from the virus. Still, there are a few ways you can lower your risk of picking up the flu.
Get the Flu Shot
Despite what you may believe, the flu shot isn’t just for kids and seniors. While those two age groups will benefit the most from getting the shot, the Centers for Disease Control actually recommends that everyone over the age of 6 months get the vaccine each flu season. Although you might think that the flu shot is just one vaccine, there are actually two variations: the trivalent and the quadrivalent, which protect against multiple virus strains. The only difference between the two is that the quadrivalent fights off an additional virus.
Stay Active and Eat Healthy
A rockin’ bod isn’t the only benefit of a good diet and exercise routine. Staying fit and eating well will keep your immune system working correctly, lowering your risk of catching the flu. Preferably, you should eat a diet of varied whole foods full of vitamins and nutrients to keep your immune system ticking away. Further, moderate exercise a few times a week will help your body circulate flu-killing blood cells.
Avoid Flu Hotspots
Getting your shots and eating right will get you so far in preventing the flu, but you can avoid putting your immune system to the test by staying as germ-free as possible. That means you shouldn’t get too close to those who are sick or touch things that sick people have touched. Of course, you’re never going to know who’s touched something, especially when you’re out in public. That’s why it’s a good idea to wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your mouth and face.
While you’ll never completely reduce the risk of getting the flu, sticking to these three good habits will go a long way in preventing you from becoming ill. Better yet, by keeping yourself healthy and flu-free, you’ll be doing everyone else around you a favor and preventing them from getting sick, too.
[Image via Getty]