The leaves are creating a colourful patch work blanket on the ground. The air is crisper. The kids have their back to school routines down to a science. These are just a few tell-tale signs that fall is here to stay. You know what else happens during the fall? The inevitable “Fall Spike.” What is this, you ask? It is when children bring the germs they pick up from school and “share” them with the rest of the family. This can result in illness ranging from colds to severe asthma flare-ups. Want to prevent a Fall Spike from happening in your home this year? We are sharing 4 fabulous tips to fight back to school germs from affecting your family this school year.
1. It is as simple as washing your hands
Let’s face it, we touch just about EVERYTHING with our hands. From door knobs to light switches to smartphones and keyboards, our hands and fingers go everywhere. You also have to remember that we are not the only ones touching these objects. What has been on one person’s hands will transfer onto any object someone else touches. Yeah, it sounds a bit icky, but it’s true! How can you prevent all of the lovely germs from making you or your loved ones sick? This can easily be done by washing your hands! A good session where your hands are thoroughly washed with soap and water frequently throughout the day helps prevent the “friends” from being spread around your home.
2. Eating well = feeling well
There is a good reason why we were poked to eat broccoli, Brussel sprouts, fish and other foods we turned our noses up at as kids. It was to help us make good food choices. Eating well helps us intake vital vitamins and minerals our bodies need to be strong and combat germs and viruses that may get into our bodies. This is especially true during cold and flu season. Some of the best foods to stock up on to help be #fluless this year are:
- Beans and legumes – a good source of protein and zinc
- Citrus fruit – a good source of vitamin C, fresh and frozen. Check to make sure there are no added sugar or salt if you have juice.
- Nuts and seeds – a variety of them contain vitamin E, which is a dietary antioxidant that helps with maintaining good health
- Probiotic foods – they contain bacteria which may help to keep your immune system balanced and working well. It is better to eat foods that contain probiotics than taking probiotic supplements because you will be ingesting other nutrients, such as protein and calcium at the same time.
Chips, pop, chocolate and the other “junk foods” may be very, very tempting (and, yes, absolutely scrumptious) to eat, but they should not be consumed on a regular basis. These foods should be enjoyed in moderation. Not sure which foods will help your body and which ones will hinder you? Head over to your local Loblaws to book an appointment to speak to one of their Registered Dietitians to get the low-down on which foods you should be squirreling away this flu season.
3. Know when it is time to recharge
As parents, we have a lot of responsibilities. We have jobs to go to, errands to run and kids to care for. But if we are not feeling on top of our game, we have to know when to hang up our super capes and throw on the super comfy robes and slippers to stay at home to recover and recharge. If you take your temperature and see that it passes 38°C (or 100°F), you should be resting and getting rid of your fever. When is it cool to return back to your daily grind if you are feeling the symptoms of a fever? A good indication would be to wait at least twenty-four hours after feeling fever-free. If you don’t wait, then not only are you doing yourself, and anyone else you come in contact with a disservice. It could result in passing your germs onto them or making it harder for you to fight your illness.
4. Protect yourself
Needles. Yes, for some people, they are to be avoided like the plague! Whether you are a fan or a hater of these pointy objects, they are your first defense against the flu.
Do you know what some of the symptoms of the flu are? The flu can include the following signs:
- Sore throat
- Body and muscle aches
- Possible vomiting and diarrhea
Were you also aware that these symptoms can manifest themselves one to four days after being exposed to the virus and can last anywhere from one to three weeks?
“Oh, but I have to schedule an appointment with the family doctor to get a vaccinated” is the next thing that might pop into your head? This is no longer the case. You are now able to go to your neighbourhood Loblaws and get the flu shot from one of their in-store pharmacists this fall. Why should you have to suffer for weeks with the flu when you can get protected against this virus in only a few minutes?
These helpful tips will help to keep you and your family fight the back to school germs from making you sick this school year. Not only are they good for helping you combat illness during flu season at home, they are great for preventing the spread of these germs elsewhere. The best part about these handy hints is that they are easy to do. So keep those hands clean, stay at home if you do feel ill, and book an appointment with a dietitian from Loblaws, and while you’re there, get your flu shot with one of their in-store pharmacists!
Disclaimer: This post was generously sponsored by Loblaws. The views I shared are my own.