Nine Ways to Avoid the Plague of a Cold

Ashley Logan

It’s that time of year again when sniffles and coughs are heard throughout campus. Student’s slump through the halls, fighting to keep their eyes open. You hope to avoid the dreaded cold but how?
1. Healthy Diet

Being proactive and keeping your body healthy is your best defense. Eat lots of natural foods like fruits, veggies, and whole grains to maintain a strong immune system. Stay away from refined ingredients such as high fructose corn syrup, white sugar, and brown sugar. “It’s really important to eat everything in moderation so it’s ok to eat fats once in a while but not all the time,” sophomore Millie Kirchberg said.

2. Drink Fluids  

Drinking lots of fluids will flush out your system and keep your body hydrated. It’s helpful to keep a water bottle with you constantly, especially during sports. Water, tea, and juices are helpful fluids to soothe your throat and provide essential vitamins. “I put my water bottle in my backpack at night so I remember to fill it up in the morning,” sophomore Zoe Schneider said.

3. Relax

You deserve to take time off and relax. When possible, go to bed early and sleep in. This gives your immune system a chance to recharge and prepare to fight viruses. Try to get as much sleep over the weekend as you can to catch up from late hours on the weekdays. A study done by Carnegie Mellon University proved that people who got eight or more hours of sleep were less likely to catch a cold then others who slept seven hours or less.

4. Exercise

Exercising is a great way to help your immune system. It keeps your body active and strong so you are prepared to defend yourself from viruses. Being active strengthens your heart and gives you a more positive attitude. “Going on runs is a great way to stay healthy and keep up your heart rate,” freshman Arden Creson said.

5. Wash Your Hands

Get in the habit of washing your hands constantly and avoid touching your face. It’s important to kill viruses and prevent them from spreading before they enter your immune system. “It’s helpful to keep a hand sanitizer bottle on your backpack and wash your hands after you eat or touch something in a public place,” Creson said. According to the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention (CDC), people who wash their hands are 16% less likely to get a cold.

6. Sharing is Caring Except…

Viruses are easily transferred through food and drinks so think again before you share your water bottle with a friend. Even if you think your friend isn’t sick they might be carrying a virus and haven’t shown symptoms yet. “A great way to avoid germs is to be antisocial!” Schneider said.

7. Soothe Your Throat

If your throat is irritated and sore, mix a tablespoon of honey in warm water. This mixture will soothe and coat your throat to help kill bacteria. Creson suggests that you have tea and chicken noodle soup to soothe your throat.

8. Bundle Up

Stay warm in the winter weather and wear coats, scarves, gloves, and hats. Freshman Spencer Pugh advises that you carry around a portable heater to stay warm during the winter. Remember to also dress warm for sports and take off layers as you warm up.

9. Be Positive!

Keeping an optimistic attitude helps your body function better. Being positive lowers levels of stress and helps you recover from a cold faster. Don’t let problems bring you down and keep a positive outlook on life.