With so many different virus strains circulating, a flu shot is not the only defense for staying healthy. Preventative measures are the key to keeping illness at bay and avoiding giving the unwanted gift that keeps on giving. By being proactive and having a plan, you can raise the odds of staying flu-free.

Aside from sanitary best practices, such as washing your hands often, eating lots of fruits and vegetables, getting adequate rest and managing stress levels , exercise should be a part of your wellness plan. Among the obvious benefits of increased strength, energy and stamina, staying active on a regular basis helps with gut health, an important component of a robust immune system. Most people understand the concept, yet few will put it into action if exercise is not already part of their daily routine. Finding time throughout the day to stretch or do squats, even if it’s only in one-minute intervals, will boost your immunity.

Beyond taking care of the physical body, emotional health is important, too. Fear can have adverse effects on the immune system. Be mindful of what information you are feeding your brain and how it makes you feel. Avoiding news and conversations that incite fear can be one of the most important things you can do. Positive emotions combined with self-care can help you thrive.

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