Texas Living

Clean Up Your Act to Stay Healthy

By Paula Felps 11.3.15

There are a lot of things to love about fall and winter — but colds and the flu are not among them. Enjoy your season this year by safeguarding against sickness!

Prevention is the best medicine, so protecting yourself from germs and viruses really is your best defense. That means doing those things your mother always told you — like washing your hands, thoroughly, for at least 20 seconds. (Make sure you use warm water and plenty of soap!)

Speaking of germs, one of the easiest ways for germs to enter your body is through your face, so avoid touching it. And believe it or not, cleaning your desk could be the key to keeping you healthy this year: The average desk area harbors 400 times the amount of bacteria found on a toilet seat. So wipe down the keyboard, mouse, and desktop frequently!

Finally, eat right, exercise, and smile. All three have been shown to help boost your immune system.

Bouncing Back
If, despite your best efforts, you still end up under the weather, it’s best not to “power through it.” If you have a fever, stay home for at least 24 hours to avoid infecting others, and get as much vitamin C as possible. This water-soluble vitamin helps body tissue heal itself, so take supplements and eat foods loaded with it, including tomatoes, potatoes, citrus fruits, bell peppers, and strawberries. Also make sure to always get plenty of rest.

Since there’s no way to be sure you won’t fall victim to germs this season, it’s also important to make sure your health insurance is current so you can visit your doctor when you need medical care.

Prep your medicine cabinet for cold and flu season by cleaning out last year’s stash. Here’s how to properly dispose of old medications.

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