Cold and flu season is just around the corner. Are you ready? Read on to check out some of the most surprising facts about colds and flus.
You can monitor outbreaks in your area through the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
1. Fact: If There’s Only One Thing You Can Do, It’s this.
Don’t want to get sick this year? Your best defense is regularly and thoroughly washing your hands. You should be spending at least 20 seconds rubbing your hands. For more information, click here.
2. Fact: Exercise Can Prevent Colds and Flus.
Regular physical activity actually boosts your immune system, which can shorten the time you’re sick, and even prevent you from getting sick all together.
3. Fact: The Flu Can Be Very, Very Deadly.
In 1918 and 1919, about 3-5% of the world’s population, roughly 50 million people, died from the so-called “Spanish flu.” That’s more people than died in any of the 20th century’s wars, and is likely the most deadly pandemic in human history. Yes, this is an extreme example, but even in the mildest of flu seasons, thousands of people die. In the past 30 or so years, the death toll in the United States has ranged from 3,000 to 49,000 people.
4. Fact: The Cold Virus Can Travel Up to 6 Feet.
If you’re around a person that has a cold or flu, try to stand at least 6 feet away from them. That’s how far the virus can travel from an infected person.
5. Fact: There’s a Right Way to Blow Your Nose.
No, really: to get relief for your stuffy nose, press down on one nostril and gently blow the other nostril. Otherwise, you could make your congestion worse and even give yourself an earache.
6. Fact: You Can Still Get the Flu if You Get a Flu Shot.
Yep, you certainly can still get the flu after you’ve gotten a flu shot — but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t bother getting a shot all together if you otherwise can.For more on this, read the CDC’s helpful guide.
7. Fact: Some Home Remedies Really Do Work.
The jury is still out on Vitamin C, echinacea, and other cold and flu treatments, but what has been proven to work, for a few different reasons, is eating plenty of soups (chicken and otherwise). Also, drinking tea will keep you hydrated and, some research suggests, reduce inflammation.
Grandma’s Healing Soup Recipe