When you’re a college student, getting sick can seem like the end of the world. Between classes, jobs and homework, there just isn’t time for it and no student wants to wake up the morning of an exam with a fever. Luckily, there are ways for students to protect themselves against the onslaught of the flu season and decrease the chances of getting sick in the first place.
Get enough sleep
One very important way to keep the body’s immune system strong is to get plenty
of sleep, which is easier said than done for college students who stay up late doing homework. However, if students wish to remain healthy prioritizing sleep is a must. According to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, the immune system is dependent upon sleep to remain healthy. Without proper sleep, the immune system has difficulty fighting something as simple as a cold.
Wash hands thoroughly
Another important way to protect the immune system is to use good hand-
washing techniques. This may sound slightly absurd, but many people think that as long as their hands are washed the way they get clean is inconsequential. However, proper or improper hand washing can greatly affect the amount of bacteria a person’s immune system has to fight.
It’s common knowledge that to thoroughly clean your hands they must be scrubbed with soap and water. But the amount of time the hands are cleaned and the way that they are dried is also vital to how effective hand-washing can be. Harvard Health Publications says that the bacteria on someone’s hands can be reduced by 90 percent if the hands are washed for at least 15 seconds and that hands should be dried completely. If hands are wet or damp, it’s easier for harmful bacteria to spread.
Providing the body with enough vitamins can also be crucial in strengthening the immune system. When it comes down to it, the immune system is the body’s only defense. If the body doesn’t have the proper nutrients, it has a difficult time
keeping the immune system up and running. It’s not very difficult to get your body the vitamins it needs. You can walk into almost any super market and find an aisle full of bottles containing many kinds of vitamin supplements. Though there is some controversy as to which supplements are the best, most experts agree that the best way to ensure you get enough vitamins is to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.
One of the best vitamins for the immune system is Vitamin C. According to InsidersHealth.com, Vitamin C is the strongest immune booster but the human body cannot store the amount of Vitamin C it needs because it’s a water soluble vitamin. Consequently, to maintain a healthy immune system Vitamin C should be a part of people’s daily diet. There are many foods that are rich in Vitamin C: oranges, tomatoes, red pepper, spinach, broccoli and kiwis.
Everyone only has one body. If it’s not taken care of, your body won’t be able to take care of you. Staying healthy doesn’t always have to be hard. It can be accomplished by simple everyday choices that will make all the difference.