Winter quarter has arrived, which means that the cold and flu have come once again to spread their special brand of cheer. However, if you are not interested in celebrating the change in season with a week in bed, here are some tips courtesy of Student Health and fellow students on how to stay well this quarter.Handwashing
“The most important step to staying free of disease is by keeping your hands clean,” said Director of Student Health, Dr. Mary Ferris. If you shake hands with someone who has coughed on his or her hand and then you touch your face, you can easily get sick.
Cough Into Your Sleeve
On a related note, it is also important to cough into your sleeve in order to avoid spreading germs around. People are going to be touching the inside of your elbow a lot less often than your hands.
Don’t Share Your Stuff
Also in this line of thinking, make sure you avoid sharing drinks or anything else with other people. You don’t know where their mouths have been (and they might not either). Better to be safe than sorry.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Your body is a temple and like any temple, it needs to be built on a good foundation. A rock solid balance of fruit, vegetables, meats, and grains is the key to keeping your body in a healthy state.
Drink Lots of Fluids
Drinking fluids helps your body flush toxins out of its system and replace any fluids you might have lost through sweating, fever, or for any other reason. Staying hydrated even when you are not sick is important to keeping your body running smoothly.
Regular exercise increases immune system cell production, so it should be a part of your routine if you want to avoid getting sick.
Your mental health is directly tied to your physical health, so it is in your best interest not to stress yourself out too much. Make sure you don’t bury yourself in your work so completely that you forget to leave room for your brain to unwind and for you to do something you enjoy.
Get a Flu Shot
The single best way to prevent yourself from coming down with the flu is getting a flu shot. Student Health is offering them on a walk in, no appointment needed basis. They are free if you are signed up for UC SHIP, or you can pay $20 if you waived SHIP.
Take some Airborne
Airborne is the method of choice for preventing illness for students such as fourth-year statistics and mathematics double major, Diana Urias. Airborne is a drug people usually take for crowded, germ-ridden areas such as airplanes, and a college campus fits that description perfectly.
Have a drink
One student who chooses to remain anonymous swears that any ailment he is afflicted by can be remedied with a beer or two. I did some fact-checking with Dr. Ferris on this one; she said while the beer itself probably is not the remedy, the placebo effect it creates if you think it works could be a powerful healing factor.
Keeping your body in a good Circadian rhythm is vital if you want to stay healthy. Getting enough sleep gives your body the chance to repair itself if any threats enter uninvited and gives you the energy to make it through the day.
Hopefully these tips are enough to keep you on your feet this quarter and staying well through the long winter.
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