How to Have a Sniffle-Free Semester

By Maggie Young
When the semester gets rolling and the assignments start to pile up, your immune system often takes a hit. Health is the first item to get moved down the priority list and consequently, sickness strikes! Luckily there are many ways to keep your immunity strong and those cold bugs away. Read on to learn about ways to keep your body in tip-top shape when life gets crazy.

Get some quality shut eye. It's understandable that college students can't always get the perfect amount of shut eye. Aim for six to seven hours a night of rest. Sleep is extremely important because it gives the body time to repair and get ready for the next day. Plan your schedule so that you are able to get adequate sleep. With this strategy you won't end up missing classes and important events due to sickness.

Eat a balanced diet. If you have a healthy body it will be less susceptible to the germs floating around. Your body will have optimal nutrients to fight off the colds that come your way. Make sure you get sufficient amounts of protein, whole grains, nuts, fruits, veggies and dairy in your diet. It is also a smart idea to load up on foods that are high in Vitamin C such as oranges, strawberries and red bell peppers.
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Wash your hands. Sometimes it's easy to forget to wash your hands throughout the day, but it is a must if you want to stay in good health! You should wash your hands for as long as it takes to sing Happy Birthday. It sounds silly, but it works! If soap and water aren't available then hand sanitizers make for a perfect substitute.

Get physical. Try to get about 30 minutes of physical activity most or all days of the week. This can be anything from a simple walk to a weight lifting class at your college recreation center. Do what you feel up to that day and your body will stay strong! Although if you are feeling a little under the weather, it's better to stay home and rest until you are over being sick.

Sip on some tea. Warm tea soothes and relaxes the body. Different teas have different “specialties” that provide benefits. Green tea is the best choice to upkeep the efficiency and health of your body. It is loaded with antioxidants that keep your body clean and fight disease. Peppermint tea is another excellent choice because it soothes the stomach and helps with digestion.

Know when to say no. If your schedule is loaded and you don't have any “me” time, it is time to start saying no to additional activities. In this case, when you say no to someone or something you are saying “yes” to yourself. Remember, it's okay to say no once in awhile, your sanity and health are at stake!

Stay hydrated. Drinking water is essential to your health. Bring a water bottle along with you to class and sip on it throughout the day. The constant intake of water will keep you energiz
ed and refreshed inside and out.

Relax and have some fun! Excess stress will almost always lead to sickness. Beat the stress by not only planning out your schedule well, but by penciling in some fun and relaxing activities. This will allow for your body to catch a mental and physical break and kick the stress to the curb. Try going to a yoga class at your college recreation center, reading a book you enjoy or painting your nails to chill out after a long day of classes.

Follow these tips and stay strong and free of sickness this semester!

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