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Flu Blues: Proactive approach to flu season serves as best prevention

From flu shots to gallons and gallons of hand sanitizers, the cold and flu season leaves you flustered and in search of just about any preventative measures you can think of to stave off feeling sick.
Some may call that approach anal retentive or overly proactive, but these probably are the same people ranting and raving from bed, surprised that they're sick.
So what is the happy medium when it comes to conquering sickness during the peak time? Isolating yourself at home through the spring isn't exactly a practical notion, nor is ignoring blatantly coming into contact with a sick person.
As far as the flu goes, nothing is full proof, but a flu shot certainly seems like a fantastic place to start. The vaccination is incredibly effective despite rumors that run rampant that a flu shot actually increases your odds of getting the flu.
Recent studies from Walgreens Flu Impact Report noted that nearly 50% of those who had the flu last season missed some sort of activity or event as a result. The flu is more than just tossing aside sick days from work but also can translate into a school play that you're forced to miss or holiday shopping that has you on the sidelines.

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Perhaps the easiest way to ward off unwanted germs is the simple act of washing and drying your hands. Although offering this as a means to make the flu or a cold non existent seems silly, you'd be shocked to find that a good portion of the population still ignores washing their hands during the peak sickness season.
And if you're making it a point to wash your hands, do so correctly. That means hot water and antibacterial soap if possible. The actual art of washing your hands means rubbing both hands together, rather than simply swiping your hand across some water and then reaching for a towel. That effort is questionable at best and isn't going to do you many favors as far as prevention goes.
Even if you've aced "Hand Washing 101," you still want to make it a point, especially at work or other public places, to avoid touching your eyes, mouth or nose. And no matter how hungry or thirsty you are, don't eat or drink off a sick person. You can just buy your own piece of pumpkin pie, please.
Much to the chagrin of some, exercise is one of your better friends during the cold and flu season. A quick jog or brisk early morning walk gets your heart moving, and any exercise helps promote a healthier immune system. Ingesting probiotics or any other immune invigorating food quickly turns your body into a proverbial fortress when it comes to getting sick.
If you're adding exercise and a better diet to your regimen, then eliminating stress completes the process nicely. Stress on your body makes it more susceptible to getting sick; think of your body and its function as a deployed army of soldiers. They can only cover so much ground, so stress takes up a good bit of their efforts.
As far as effort goes, preventing the flu and cold truthfully doesn't take much. It's more about an exercise in common sense and not assuming that the common cold or flu won't find you this season.

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