Living: Building immunity s best sickness prevention

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By Katherine Garcia

kgarcia203@student.alamo.edu

Taking care of yourself may seem difficult with a busy lifestyle, but there are some simple tips to help you stay healthy.

Education support specialist Erika Peña in student life said the less stress one has, the stronger the immune system is.

“You should have a good immune system to deal with (illness) so eat well, rest on a daily basis,” Ellen Brennan, biology professor and nutritionist, agreed.

Brennan said now is a good time to get a flu shot because it takes a few weeks for the flu shot to become active and effective.

Students should wash hands and wrists for at least 10 seconds with hot water, Peña said.

She said cleaning a cell phone often with an antibacterial wipe can also prevent illness.

She said sneezing in the crook of the elbow, covering the mouth when coughing and wearing boots to keep feet dry in rainy weather are important.

Staying healthy is important, but sometimes illness just cannot be avoided.

When students are sick, their studies may be affected if they are unable to get to class.

“The best thing to do is rest, which most people don’t do,” Brennan said, adding that fluids such as broth and soups help keep body temperature warm.

Peña advised people who are ill to avoid vigorous exercise because that will intensify the symptoms and to take medicine at the first sign of symptoms.

She said not to hang around too many people because germs will spread easily.

Peña suggests students who get sick but have tests in their classes should try to get to class take the exams.

“Take care of your exams, then take care of yourself,” Peña said.

This is when Brennan’s advice to take it easy until strength returns applies. Students need time to recover and build up immunity to prevent future illnesses.

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