We’re so grateful to Amanda, of Nutritionist Reviews, for partnering with us to share her family’s story! View Amanda’s full blog post here.
Flu season is in full force! Did you know that February is peak flu season? Yuck! Last year, we were lucky to avoid sicknesses all season long but this year, we have been hit a few times. I want to share my tips for feeling your best during flu season that we practice to try to stay healthy!
1. Get your flu vaccine
Back in October for the kids and November for Troy and I, we all got our flu vaccines. It is always so easy to do since most pharmacies and stores like Walmart have walk-in appointments available. We did ours at Walmart this year for the first time and had a great experience. In the past, we’ve gone to CVS which is great too. The kid’s got their flu shot at the pediatrician’s office.
Vaccines are a safe and effective way to protect against the flu. Now is an important time to get it since the hospitals are already overwhelmed with people sick with COVID-19. We get our flu shots annually and it is no big deal. As far as I know, we have not gotten the flu yet. Also, if you haven’t gotten your COVID vaccine yet, you can get that at the same time as your flu shot. Many people that I know have gotten their booster shot and the flu shot at the same time without any issues!
I Vaccinate is a wonderful resource for providing helpful information based on medical science and research to help Michigan residents protect their families from vaccine-preventable diseases. Learn more about which vaccines to get and when, the safety of vaccines and more.
2. Eat the rainbow
Making sure to give your body proper nutrition is also important for making sure you feel your best. We try extra hard to pack in a variety of produce in the winter especially so that we can stay as healthy as possible. A great way to get a bunch of nutrients in that the whole family loves is to make with a smoothie. We load it with spinach, bananas (or any frozen fruit), protein powder, flax or chia seeds and milk for a boost of nutrients. The kids love having theirs in a bowl topped with cereal too!
3. Focus on mental health
Living in Michigan, it is easy to feel the winter blues so I am always mindful of my mental health this time of year. I make sure to get outside regularly when we can even though it is cold because it makes such a huge difference in how I feel. If the weather is awful, I walk on the treadmill or do a workout YouTube video.
The same goes for our kids. A day of sledding or walks outside when the sun is out helps to keep their moods happy, and they also sleep so well!
4. Take supplements when needed
In the summer, we mostly skip taking vitamins as we get most of our nutrients through food but in the winter with so much sickness going around and produce not being quite as available as in the summer months, we take a few vitamins to ensure our nutrient needs are being met. We take a multivitamin making sure that it has plenty of vitamin D, zinc and vitamin C in it along with omega-3 and probiotics. Sometimes, we take an elderberry supplement which has vitamins that are beneficial for your immune system.
Always make sure to talk to your doctor about what supplements are best for you and your family. With less sun in the winter here in Michigan, making sure your vitamins support your body’s needs throughout the year is important.
5. Avoid germs as much as possible
We are definitely no longer in the fully quarantined stage like we were early on in March 2020. I was finding it to affect my children’s mental health and development negatively and ultimately decided that it was time for us to live. Therefore, we are seeing family and friends and doing things that are important to us but we are limiting our exposure to people who are sick as much as possible and staying home when we are sick ourselves. Wash your hands, wear a mask when appropriate, and avoid touching your face when in public. Along with living a healthy lifestyle, we do these things to stay as healthy as possible while still living life.
Who else is day dreaming about warmer days ahead and getting out of the cold and /flu season? I know I am! Until then, I hope these tips are helpful to keep you feeling your best during this time.