The holidays are often packed with family gatherings, gift exchanges, hearty meals and general merriment. But it’s no fun if you become ill.
Fortunately, following a few tips can help you be at your healthiest as the festivities hit…
- Get some exercise.
Cut down your own Christmas tree, walk the dog, choose the far-off parking spot or do an extra lap while shopping at the mall. Exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous to boost your immune system; even small jaunts help.
- Use hand sanitizer.
Think of all the things you touch while in public – door handles, gas pump nozzles, elevator buttons, pens. When you’re unable to wash, use a pump or two of sanitizer. Also, consider using sanitizer wipes on your shopping cart handle or to wipe down airplane armrests and lap trays when traveling. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and wash your hands often.
- Get your flu shot.
This is your best bet for avoiding influenza. And while the shot doesn’t ensure you won’t come down with the flu, it can make a case less severe if you do catch it.
- Keep stress levels down.
Learn to say no to holiday events that you don’t actually want to attend. Consider drawing names for a gift exchange rather than buying for a massive amount of people. And head to bed early to get a decent amount of sleep.
- Consume wisely.
Eggnog and mulled wine may be plentiful this time of year, but keep alcohol consumption to a minimum since it can weaken your immune system. Also, sugar and fatty foods should be a special treat rather than a months-long free-for-all.
If you’re feeling under the weather this holiday season and find it necessary to run your symptoms by a doctor, visit www.osfoncall.org to request a virtual visit.