By Bryan Mercer

Colds and flus can be especially problematic for those with asthma or other respiratory conditions. Since your airways are already sensitive, the virus does more damage. And this time of year, cold and flu viruses are abundant. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to avoid getting sick even during winter.

  1. 1. Get a Flu Vaccine

    We still haven’t found a cure for the common cold, but we have developed widely-available vaccines for the flu. So really, there’s no excuse for getting the flu these days. Don’t like getting a shot? No worries, there are now several options.

  2. 2. Don’t Touch Your Face

    Fortunately, germs can’t teleport through your skin. They need an opening into your body-- like your mouth, nose or even eyes. So avoid touching your face as much as possible.

  3. 3. Wash Your Hands

    Running water over your hands dilutes the germs and sends them down the drain, and using warm water can kill them.

  4. 4. Moisturize Your Hands

    During the winter months, your hands are at risk of getting dry, cracked, and flaky, especially when you’re washing them a lot. These cracks provide germs yet another opening into the body. So when you wash your hands, be sure to dry them fully and moisturize your hands right after.

  5. 5. Sleep

    Sleep keeps your body and immune system strong, so you have a better shot of fighting any germs that might come your way.

  6. 6. Get Your Protein

    A low protein diet can deplete your immune system, so enjoy some high protein foods such as meat, eggs or yogurt.

  7. 7. Sanitize Your Phone

    These days, most of us are constantly touching our phones-- transferring all the germs we get from the world around us onto the same device that we regularly press against our face. So it’s a good idea to clean your phone with a sanitizing wipe every now and then.