Autumn, with all its inherent vagaries, is in full swing. The piercing cold wind, pouring rain, puddles underfoot, wet shoes – and, consequently, a sharp increase in sneezing and coughing in public transport, stores, schools, kindergartens, etc. Under such conditions, it’s possible to catch a respiratory infection and end up on sick leave with a runny nose, sore throat, chills, and a high fever. There are at least two hundred viruses that cause these symptoms, but the flu is still the most dangerous of them.
Up to half a million people worldwide become its victims every year. It is not surprising: the disease spreads exceptionally quickly, and, unfortunately, a universal pill that can cope with all strains has not yet been invented. Unfortunately, you can’t just sit out this season playing teenpatti3.in. No one cancels work and school. So, how to strengthen the immune system and protect yourself from colds?
Briefly, we can highlight such tips:
- Keep your nose warm.
- Shake hands less often.
- Wash your clothes in hot water.
- Eat fewer sweets.
- Sleep for at least 8 hours.
- Observe the “two-seat rule.
- Soap and water instead of tissues and antiseptic.
- Rinse your nose with salt water.
- Exercise, but not too much.
- Make up for vitamin D deficiency.
The right autumn menu
A proper and varied diet is the best support for the immune system. The autumn menu must include vegetables – better if they are not subjected to significant heat treatment. Of course, you can’t do without fruit – for example, make a fruit salad in the morning. Diversifying the diet with a handful of seeds and nuts (walnuts, almonds, or cashews) is also desirable. Eating whole grains – whole-grain bread, dark rice, and monastic oatmeal is essential. Insufficient vitamin D levels in the body markedly reduce the production of substances stimulating the immune system. As a result, the risk of catching an infection increases threefold! Eat as many vitamin D-rich foods as possible, such as eggs, cod liver, oily fish, and dairy products.
But unloading diets in the fall can play a cruel trick on you. It is not for nothing that with the onset of cold weather, your body demands more food to accumulate fat deposits. Therefore, in the autumn and winter period, it is recommended to increase the number of calories in food – the body should get enough protein of vegetable and animal origin. But even here, you should not go too far because an excess of fats is also harmful. In addition, it is helpful to take vitamin and mineral complexes, specifically selenium and zinc, at this time of year. It is also essential to drink more water, preferably hot drinks. Enough fluid will help the immune system and prevent dry skin, usually seen in the fall and winter.
The end of September is the best time to get a flu shot. Flu vaccines have been proven to be safe and effective. Antibodies last about six months – that is, the entire flu season. Vaccination does not provide a 100 percent guarantee a person won’t get sick. Still, it will protect against severe complications and death. Thanks to vaccination, a person not only saves himself and his family members from possible colds. Especially now, to be vaccinated, you do not need to go to the hospital; you can use mobile points near the subway, or shopping malls, to take the procedure at your place of work, etc. The WHO predicts which flu strains will be active in the new season every year.
Keep your head cold and your nose warm.
It is known that airborne droplets most easily transmit viruses. According to doctors, to avoid colds, keeping the feet warm and the nose is necessary because it is a natural “gateway” for infections. When the nose gets cold, blood circulation slows down, and the immune blood cells cannot resist germs to their full potential. Therefore, covering this part of the body with a scarf or handkerchief during solid winds and out is essential. Experts also advise flushing the nasal passages with seawater or sea salt sprays.
Pouring a bucket of ice water on yourself, as in the famous flash mob, is not necessary, but to contrast dousing feet or standing for two minutes under a cold shower at the end of the bath will be helpful. Physical activity is also a sure cure for colds. Heavy exercise is contraindicated during the cold season. Fitness, swimming, yoga, fast walking, sports dancing, and jogging strengthen the immune system and promote the production of macrophages – cells that destroy pathogenic viruses and bacteria. Specialists advise having sex more often because a high libido increases the number of antibodies in the blood.
Take a walk, but dress for the weather.
Modern man spends most of the day sitting at the computer and moving again while driving a car. Such statics weakens the muscles, making it easier for diseases to attack us. If you are lazy or cannot do sports, the best solution is to take more walks. Walking up to seven thousand steps (3-5 km) a day is desirable. And it is better to walk in the sun, to saturate the body with vitamin D. You should dress according to the weather, but not to wrap up. First, it is essential to insulate the back, chest, and neck. It is better to prefer clothes made of natural fabrics – wool and cotton.
Sleep is the best means to restore the body. According to scientists, people who sleep less than six hours are four times more prone to colds than those who dedicate seven hours to sleep. If you do not get enough sleep on weekdays, you can “go crazy” on weekends. A comfortable mattress, room ventilation, and deep breathing will be helpful, but it is better to refuse sleeping pills.
Wash your hands with soap and water
Washing your hands regularly with soap and water or wiping them with disinfectant wipes reduces the risk of getting sick by 45%. Infection often occurs when we touch door handles in public places, hold handrails in the subway, and shake hands.
Avoid overwork and stress.
Statistically, the risk of getting sick increases on Monday, at the start of the work week. Stress and a depressed mood are the faithful “companions” of colds and flu. Psychologists advise, in this case, to change your attitude towards the activity: not to take everything personally and correctly build for yourself a system of motivation; in some cases, it is helpful to take a short vacation, to arrange an exciting weekend with family and friends, talk to interesting people or somehow to organize yourself an emotional discharge.