10 cold prevention tips

When you start to feel the weather take a dip into cooler temperatures, you can be fairly certain cold season is on its way.

Officials with the Mayo Clinic say there are more than 100 types of the cold virus. If you come down with symptoms of a cold, see your Los Angeles doctor immediately for the best treatment options. Sign in to Angie's List to see which of the 5,000 listed are highly rated.

Cold viruses can linger in your system for up to two weeks, so follow these 10 steps that might help you from becoming infected.

1. Take your vitamins. Things like vitamin C and zinc can help keep the immune system running smoothly so that it makes it harder for a cold to set in. Talk to your doctor about the right dosages to take for early prevention.

2. Eat healthy. The right foods can help prevent colds. The live cultures in yogurt can help keep good bacteria in your body that help with cold prevention. Foods with phytochemicals, such as fruits and vegetables, are full of nutrients that can help ward off the virus.

3. Exercise. Fitness, especially high impact activities like aerobics, helps get the blood flowing and increases oxygen in the body. This will help increase your body's natural abilities to fight viruses. Check with your doctor before starting a fitness routine if you have any medical issues.

4. Frequently wash your hands or use hand sanitizer. Wash your hands before touching your face. If you can't wash your hands then use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer until you can properly wash them. This will help kill the cold germs before they get into your system.

5. Be prepared. When you notice people around you coming down with cold symptoms, it is time to start hiking up your prevention.

6. Get plenty of rest. Nothing helps the body heal better than sleep.

7. Drink fluids. Drink plenty of water, which will help flush toxins out of the body. Doctors recommend you get at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water daily.

8. Don't smoke. Smoking decreases your immune function, which makes your body more susceptible to the cold virus.

9. Limit alcohol. Do this for the same reason you should stop smoking. Alcohol intake decreases the immune system's function. The immune system needs to be at its best in order to fight off a cold.

10. Cover your mouth but not with your hands. Sneeze and cough into a tissue, and if one isn't available use the inside of your elbow.

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