Sniffles, chills, coughing, body aches; it sounds like flu season.

Temperatures are dropping, and the holiday season is fast approaching, which means large gatherings and more time spent indoors.

The festive season is a time for giving and spreading joy, but it can also spread less desirable gifts, like bugs and flu. While there are no guarantees, you can take preventative measures to prepare yourself and your family during this time of year.

The flu is a respiratory (nose, throat, and lung) infection caused by various influenza viruses. Influenza (flu) viruses are spread by inhaling droplets from someone infected who is coughing or sneezing or by transferring germs from a contaminated surface to your eyes, nose, or mouth.


First, practice healthy habits:

Keep your hands clean. Washing your hands often for at least 20 seconds will help protect you from germs. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser. And avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.

Disinfect. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces like doorknobs, remote controls, and phones.

Book your flu jab sooner rather than later. One of the best ways to help keep the flu away is to ensure your whole family gets vaccinated. Contact your healthcare provider for an appointment before peak infection time.

Then, keep strong with a routine:

Take your vitamins: Load up on immune support supplements daily, such as vitamins C, B6, D, and zinc.

Get enough sleep. A lack of sleep can weaken your immune system and make you more susceptible to any sickness. Aim for seven to nine hours each night to allow your body to keep up its defenses.

Make nutrition a priority. A well-balanced diet with fresh foods and lean protein can help strengthen your immune system and boost your health. When shopping, also think of nourishing foods with a long shelf life — like peanut butter, canned or frozen veggies, and your go-to protein bars. Check out our healthy recipe ideas here.

Be physically active. Regular exercise at a moderate to vigorous intensity for 60 minutes or less may help your body’s immune response to help fight off germs and potential illnesses.

Stay hydrated. Proper hydration is important for many body functions. Water keeps your digestion working well, flushes the system, and fights fatigue. Maintain hydration throughout the day by carrying a bottle of water with you.

Lastly, be prepared:

Re-stock staples. Have personal and home care supplies on hand, such as fluids (juice, tea), diffusers, face masks, tissues, hand wash, hand sanitizer, and disinfectants to avoid heading out to the store when you’re feeling under the weather.

Check your medicine cabinet. Before using medication, ensure any leftover products from last season are still in date. Ask your family healthcare provider or local pharmacist for over-the-counter flu and cold season support suggestions. They can also advise on potential interactions with any prescribed medications.


In addition to working your way through this checklist, remember that it’s always best to try to prevent getting sick in the first place. Don’t underestimate common sense safety practices like avoiding crowded indoor spaces, staying home if you’re sick, and practicing good general hygiene.

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