So, it’s happened again: you’ve got the holiday fever…and no, we are not talking about the kind filled with a penchant for festive cookies, champagne toasts, and cozy sweaters. Whether it is the stomach flu during the Thanksgiving feast or a cold on Christmas morning, getting sick over the holiday season is an inevitability most of us have come to terms with. It’s not just the “holiday season,” it is also “flu and cold season.” However, before you chalk it up to some cruel universal joke, one where you must trade the elaborate holiday party buffet for bland chicken soup in bed, consider the fact that there is a very logical reason for this surge in sickness (several, actually), which means there are also several logical ways to prevent it from happening.
First of all, let’s be clear: a holiday cold has nothing to do with luck, but more likely, has to do with odds. And in this case, the odds are not particularly in your favor. Viruses, like the ones responsible for that stuffy nose, fever, and nausea, have a tendency to thrive and circulate much better in the colder months. Additionally, with frequent travel, an outbreak that may be happening in one region can quickly board a plane and spread in to a new region, all in a day’s work. So, you see, germs are a plenty, and if your immune system is not in tip-top shape, you are bound to fall victim sooner or later. Speaking of your immune system…
During the holidays, we have a tendency to wear ourselves thin, whether that means staying out late and overdoing it on the eggnog or stressing out over hosting family, traveling, and all that shopping. When we stress, the cortisol levels in our bodies rise, which in turn lowers our immunity and makes us more prone to infection. Additionally, stress can make it difficult to get the quality sleep we need—another known immune system villain.
Now, let’s assume you have fallen victim to the stress, sleeplessness, and a tendency to overindulge over the holidays (come on, it happens to the best of us). Already, we know those viruses are circulating because… “‘Tis the season.” But that’s not all of it. You drag your poor weakened immune system out into the world and you bring it right smack in the center of all that is germy: the mall. You touch elevator buttons, handle products and clothing hangers that have likely passed through the hands of hundreds of other people, rest your hand on the escalator railing, touch dressing room doorknobs…the list goes on. Then, to top it all off, we come home, choose our pajamas over our workout clothes, and watch a movie instead of boosting our immune systems with some healthy exercise. Put it all together, and you’ve got a surefire recipe for holiday sickness.
So, what can we do to prevent getting sick? Here are some quick tips:
- Wash your hands…a lot.
- Get at least seven hours of sleep a night. If insomnia gets the best of you, consider the rapid delivery of melatonin from a supplement like OneSecond Supplements Daily Sleep Aid.*
- Workout! Even just 30 minutes of light exercise has been shown to bolster your immune defenses.
- Be proactive. Prevention is always the best cure. Consider a flu shot at the start of the season and be sure to wrap up warm. Exposure to abrupt changes in temperature can make you more vulnerable to catching colds.
- Enjoy yourself. Try not to let the stress of the season get the best of you. Remember, at the heart of it all, this is about spreading love and joy to those around us. Take a deep breath (meditate if you can) and smile.
May we recommend:
OneSecond Supplements Daily Sleep Aid: If you need a hand catching some zzz’s, this Daily Sleep Aid may be the product for you. With natural melatonin and calming chamomile, sweet dreams are only a spray away.*