Whether you love it or hate it, the fact remains that the winter months are upon us. And while depending on what part of the country you live in will ultimately impact what that means to you, for millions and millions of individuals, the winter months offerings are quite clear and predictable: snow, traffic, the cold, and sadly, the onslaught of unwanted and unwelcome sickness like the cold, flu and the ever dreaded pneumonia.
But why is that the winter months seem to bring on so much sickness? Despite the popular myth that your parents and grandparents probably told you – it isn’t the cold that gets you sick. So what does?
While doctors and researchers have many theories as to why people tend to get sick in the winter months more than any other type of year, the truth is that it isn’t only one reason.
Evidence suggests that while the cold weather alone isn’t what is causing you to get sick, it is causing the suppression of your immune system, which make the chance of contracting an infection more prevalent. Also, due to the cold, more people are spending their time inside, and being that it is cold and inside is likely heated, this combination of warmth and people makes for a perfect breeding ground for viruses and bacteria.
So what can you do about it?
Aside from the standard act of keeping warm, washing your hands and avoiding sick people, a person’s body is already equipped with a great way to fight and ward off infection – and that is known as our immune system.
Didn’t we just say that the winter months and cold weather diminish the immune system? Yes, we did, but that doesn’t mean that you are helpless in the fight to stay healthy, especially from serious ailments like pneumonia. All you have to do is give your immune system a helping hand.
An easy way to boost your immunity is with the foods you eat. Healthy food is packed with essential vitamins and nutrients your immune system needs in order to stay strong. When you eat unhealthy foods, you are weakening your immune system so it can’t fight off any impending threats as effectively.
Despite popular belief, pneumonia is a completely preventable condition, however, in order to keep it at bay, you need a strong immune system. By taking the time this winter season to wash your hands, eat healthy, take your vitamins, dress warmly, and avoid known sick people, you can easily make it through the winter months with little more than the occasional snow shoveling – weather pending.