Boost your immune system this winter

Boost your immune system this winter

Staying healthy this winter is so important as the cold can have a really detrimental effect on your body and immune system. Here are some tips from Dr Edward Gaynor, A Doctor from Bupa UK on how we can boost our immune systems and keep our health in check.

"Catching a cold or flu in winter might seem unavoidable, but you can give yourself and your colleagues the best chance at staying healthy through the colder months. Here are some tips to help keep you at your best this winter.

"Keep germs at bay through cleanliness : It sounds obvious, but this is vital considering influenza is transferred like any virus - through people! The office is a breeding ground for viruses like the flu. Wash your hands with hot soapy water, cover your mouth if you sneeze and if you're feeling under the weather, see if you can work from home. You don't need to become the office germophobe, but it will make a difference.

"Boost your immune system: A healthy diet is key to fighting flu. In winter it can be tempting to reach for pre-packaged soups and ready meals, but a diet full of fresh fruit and vegetables will boost your immune system. Supplements like Echinacea, Zinc and Vitamin C are good in some cases, but extra vitamins and minerals shouldn't be necessary if you're eating a balanced diet. If in doubt, check with your doctor or pharmacist.

"Consider getting the flu jab: It's not for everyone but getting the flu jab every year can cut your chances of catching influenza by 75 per cent. Talk to your local doctor about booking a vaccination.

"Stay active: Like nutrition, a strong immune system is also based on a good level of fitness. In winter, this can be difficult, so start the morning with a gentle stretch and avoid sitting for too long. Exercise like yoga, dancing, boxing or swimming are great in winter and have that feel-good fun factor. You could increase motivation levels by setting a goal to work towards through the colder months; it doesn't have to be a marathon! A brisk walk, mindfulness and healthy eating are all valuable goals.

" Don't get stressed out by Christmas: The festive period can be a particularly stressful time of year for some people, balancing family, friends, work commitments and Christmas celebrations. Don't overdo things; if you're feeling unwell, it's time to take a break. You will recover faster and be less likely to come down with a secondary infection."


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