Most secrets to good health aren’t secrets at all, but common sense. For example, you should avoid contact with bacteria and viruses at school and work. But a whole host of other feel-good solutions can help you live healthier while avoiding that runny nose or soar throat. Here are 12 tips for preventing colds and the flu.
1. Eat green vegetables
Green, leafy vegetables are rich in vitamins that help you maintain a balanced diet — and support a healthy immune system. According to a study of mice, eating cruciferous vegetablessends a chemical signal to the body that boosts specific cell-surface proteins necessary for efficient immune-system function. In this study, healthy mice deprived of green vegetables lost 70 to 80 percent of cell-surface proteins.
2. Get Vitamin D
Reports indicate that many Americans fall short of their daily vitamin D requirements. Deficiencies in vitamin D may lead to symptoms such as poor bone growth, cardiovascular problems, and a weak immune system.
Results from a 2012 study in the journal Pediatricssuggest that all children should be checked for adequate vitamin D levels. This is especially important for those with dark skin, since they don’t get vitamin D as easily from exposure to sunlight.
Foods that are good sources of vitamin D include egg yolks, mushrooms, salmon, canned tuna, and beef liver. You can also buy vitamin D supplements at your local grocery store or pharmacy. Choose supplements that contain D3 (cholecalciferol), since it’s better at raising your blood levels of vitamin D.