How to steer clear of winter lurgies

Winter has arrived and every workplace will have people sniffling. It's the perfect environment to harbour and spread germs.

"You can get them from contact from hands - things like telephones and door handles which are touched a lot [and] from being in close contact," says Dr Fiona Gordon, an Auckland GP.

Good hygiene along with regular hand washing can help keep lurgies at bay but what else?

Build up immunity

"Just have a really good immune system before you get sick. Get your vitamin C from your oranges, kiwifruit and your veggies."

She says there are benefits to dosing up on garlic, onions and honey, even turmeric.

"Funny how science catches up with thousands of years of experience," she says.  "It was known for many, many years especially in Indian medicine. They used turmeric with black pepper in it."

What about supplements?

Natural health supplements such as  GO Vir-Defence  may help people get the right amounts of the vitamins, minerals and nutrients needed to build immunity.

"Take them as winter approaches, and throughout the colder months, to really give your body that extra support," says Janeen Howard, a natural health practitioner and technical manager for GO Healthy.

"If you find that you are constantly feeling run down, then you may like to take supplements on a longer-term basis."

Ms Howard says people generally don't know what natural health supplements are out there or how they work.

"People don't generally think to take probiotics but a massive 70 percent of the immune system lies in the gut. If your gut is compromised and your good gut bacteria is out of balance, chances are your immune system is also compromised. So taking a probiotic on a daily basis, helps to repopulate that good bacteria."

But how do you know what YOUR body needs?

GO Healthy has an online tool to help people discover what supplements are right for them.

Ms Howard says it's totally normal for people to do their research around supplements.

"These days there is so much information available online, so people can easily have a read about the benefits of vitamins, zinc and other natural ingredients, in regards to immunity, and general wellbeing."

And if you do happen to get sick this winter, don't fret. Dr Gordon says it's not the end of the world.

"To some extent you just have to give in to it. Bit of rest. But there is some not bad evidence for a bit of mild to moderate exercise."

This article was created for Go Healthy to help everyone be their best selves by supporting their health, naturally.

DISCLAIMER: GO Healthy products are made in New Zealand from select imported and local ingredients. They are available exclusively in pharmacies and health stores. Always read the label and use as directed. If symptoms persist see your healthcare professional.  Go Healthy Wellington. TAPS PP2439


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