Fitness Facts: Prevention is the key to staying healthy
By Connie Colbert
GCU Director of Health Services
Prevention is the key to staying healthy. Here are some helpful hints to staying to preventing colds and flu this fall and winter:
- Wash your hands with warm soap and water. Studies show than simple hand washing can help prevent many illnesses, including COVID-19 and the flu.
- Get enough sleep. Eight hours per night is ideal to provide restoration to your body.
- Do aerobic exercises regularly. It increases your body’s natural virus-killing cells.
- Don’t cover your cough and sneezes with your hands. Use a tissue!
- Avoid sharing beverages. Germs spread easily through sharing of drinks. Mononucleosis is commonly spread in this manner.
- If you are sick, do not force yourself to go to class or work. You will only feel worse, and you will infect others.
- Go to the doctor if you feel ill.
- Drink lots of fluids. Colds and flu can deprive your body of much needed fluids. Rehydrate by drinking plenty of water or drinks containing electrolytes such as Pedialyte or Gatorade.
- Get a flu vaccination.
- Do not bite your nails. Our hands and nails typically carry a multitude of germs. By biting your nails, the germs can enter your body and cause illness.
- Do not smoke.
- Avoid ill friends and co-workers.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth. The membranes in these areas make it easy for bacteria and viruses to enter your body and cause infection.
- De-stress … there is evidence that your immune system revs up when you relax. Prayer and meditation daily for 15-30 minutes are great ways to get this one in.
- Avoid sugar and eat more fruits and veggies. The dark green, red and yellow ones carry the most nutrients.
- Wipe down your desk and phone daily with an antibacterial cloth.
- Carry hand sanitizer to use when you cannot use soap and water. Use especially before eating. Germs on your hand can get on your food and cause illness.