Three tips to help you stay healthy despite the Utah winter weather

<p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>It’s the winter mantra of every mother: “Put a coat on. It’s cold outside. You’re going to get sick.”</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>To be fair, they have a point. People</span> <span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-style: italic; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>are</span> <span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>more likely to get sick in the winter than they are at any other time of the year, because that’s about the time the cold and flu season begins and ends.</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Though falling ill may seem likely in winter, it’s not an inevitability. Doctors say that there are certain preventative measures you can take to ensure that you have a healthy, sickness-free winter. Here are just a few.</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Get Vaccinated.</span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”></span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”></span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service’s</span> <a style=”text-decoration: none;” href=”http://www.flu.gov/prevention-vaccination/vaccination/”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Flu.gov website,</span></a> <span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>the flu vaccine is still the best way to protect yourself against influenza this flu season. Those who get the flu shot are actually 60% less likely to need treatment for the flu. Available in both shot and nasal spray forms, health care officials recommend anyone and everyone six months of age and older get their flu shot.</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>That being said, this year’s flu vaccine is not as effective as was hoped. Public health officials detected a mutated strain of H3N2 influenza after the current vaccine had already gone into production.</span> <a style=”text-decoration: none;” href=”http://abcnews.go.com/Health/flu-vaccine-protect-flu-strain/story?id=27392548″><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Despite the lessened efficacy,</span></a> <span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said “We continue to recommend flu vaccine as the single best way to protect yourself against the flu.”</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Sleep Well.</span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”></span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”></span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>If you don’t get enough sleep, you’re not going to feel very well. Sleep problems alone add about</span> <a style=”text-decoration: none;” href=”http://www.bedframestore.com/462/three-sleep-accessories-you-should-consider-purchasing/#.VIX_JDHF-vh”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>$15.9 billion to national health care costs,</span></a> <span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>believe it or not. The reason sleep is such a crucial part of staying healthy, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, is because the human immune system relies on it. This means that sleep deficiency can change the way it responds to viruses and bacterial infections. In order for the immune system to work as efficiently as possible, you need to get enough rest every night.</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>In order to get more sleep at night, the</span> <a style=”text-decoration: none;” href=”http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/adult-health/in-depth/sleep/art-20048379?pg=2″><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Mayo Clinic recommends</span></a> <span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>sticking to a sleep schedule, establishing a bedtime ritual to ease the body into sleep mode, creating an ideal sleep environment, and exercising to help tucker the body out.</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>Wash Your Hands.</span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”></span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”></span><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>If you could see the germs on your hands, you’d definitely wash them. About</span> <a style=”text-decoration: none;” href=”http://visual.ly/handwashing-awareness-week”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; text-decoration: underline; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>80% of infectious diseases are transmitted by touch.</span></a> <span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention recommends regular washing with warm, soapy water for about 15 seconds. Failing that, the CDC also advises using an alcohol-based antibacterial hand sanitizer.</span></p><p style=”line-height: 1.15; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 11pt;” dir=”ltr”><span style=”font-size: 12px; font-family: Verdana; color: #000000; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;”>If you want to stay healthy this winter, make sure you get vaccinated, sleep for about eight hours every night, and wash your hands frequently throughout the day. Oh, and do as you mother says — put your coat on. It’s cold outside. You could get sick.</span></p>

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