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8 easy tips to prevent flu

Worried about catching common cold this rainy season? Be prepared to prevent it with these effective tips

Tips to prevent fluHaving survived the prickly heat this summer, we have now entered the month of June. And, while you eagerly wait for the first heavy shower of the season, you should also be careful about another round of cold and flu that will hit your city as soon as it starts raining. Here are some quick tips that can help you to keep seasonal cold and flu at bay.

1. Wash your hands: No matter how many times have you heard it, washing hands with soap before having a meal is actually the simplest and the most effective way to prevent cold and flu. If not soap, use a sanitiser to clean your hands before eating.

2. Always cover your mouth: Whether it's you who's sick or your colleague at work, covering the mouth with a tissue or handkerchief will effectively prevent direct transmission of the virus.

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3. Avoid chilled food items: Ice-creams, golas, cold drinks etc., are bad for you especially during seasonal changes because they cause congestion of respiratory mucosa and increase your susceptibility to viral infection.

4. Eat healthy: Obviously, if you eat healthy foods that include vegetables, protein rich foods, whole grains and fruits your body will get more nutrients to boost your immune system. When your immune system is strong enough, it can fight against infections in a better way. So even if the virus enters your respiratory system, your body will not let viral flu establish.

5. Drink loads of water: Water is the cheapest natural remedy for preventing flu. The mucus membrane lining your nose serves as a medium to trap dust and bacteria. When you don't drink sufficient water, this mucous membrane easily dries out and becomes less effective in doing its job. Bacteria then grab this opportunity, invade the respiratory system and cause infection. Research has found that people who consumed approximately 3 glasses of water daily had 5 times increased chances to suffer from sore throat or blocked nose compared to those who drank 8 glasses of water.

6.Sip hot tea: Although excess is not good for health as it can cause dehydration, a cup of tea is good idea to have it during the rainy season. Hot tea anyways will not be contaminated like other cold beverages plus if you choose to drink ginger or elaichi tea, it will further benefit you with its antibacterial property. If not black tea, you can also have green tea with lemon or honey. Lemon will help the mucus to loosen up and honey, as we all know, is a natural antibiotic.

7. Avoid stress: Stress can elevate you chances of catching a cold irrespective of the lifestyle and health habits you choose to follow. Although the exact relationship between stress and flu is yet to be established, some experts believe that hormones released during stress causes alterations in specific immune factors that lead to inflammation of the air passage. Also, if you're are stressed your recovery from will be delayed because of lowered immunity.

8. Quit smoking: Smoking anyways has detrimental effects on human health. Tobacco smoke causes a lot of respiratory problems like bronchitis and mucosal congestion. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) smokers have greater chances of suffering from upper as well as lower respiratory tract infections compared to non-smokers because it suppresses immunity.

References:

  • Seasonal Flu. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (www.cdc.gov)

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