The New Year is here and if your resolution for 2013 is to stay healthy and avoid getting sick, then this is for you!  Especially since flu cases in the Orlando area have hit record numbers, now is the time to protect yourself.

When it comes to avoiding the flu, I’m sure you already know the main things you have to do like wash your hands and get a flu shot.

However, iVillage has a list of tricks you might not know about to keep you healthy. Here are the top five weird ways to avoid getting sick:

#1.) Keep Your Feet Warm- Researchers think cold feet might cause the blood vessels in your sinuses to tighten up, which in-turn makes it harder for white blood cells to get to your mucus membranes. This is where most viruses sneak in, so wear socks and keep those feet warm.

#2.) After You Wash Your Hands, Don’t Dry Them with a Towel- This isn’t the environmentally-friendly thing to do, but you’re less likely to get the flu from someone in your own home if you use paper towels.  That damn, moist hand towel sitting on the kitchen sink or in the bathroom is a breeding ground for germs.

#3.) Cut Your Fingernails- Researchers at the University of Michigan tested the nails of doctors and nurses and found that you’re more likely to have bacteria under them if they grow longer than three millimeters past the tips of your fingers.

Only 18% of people with fingernails shorter than that had a significant amount of bacteria under their nails.

#4.) Take a Few Deep Breaths Each Day- You have to breathe in for three seconds from your diaphragm, so your stomach pushes out. Then exhale for three seconds, and do it three times in a row, a few times every day.  If you make it a habit, some research shows you’re less likely to get pneumonia.

#5.) Don’t Get Drunk- One drink here or there won’t hurt, but too many can mess with your white blood cells’ ability to fight off infections. The alcohol affects your immune system for up to 24 hours after you booze it up.

There are 12 more tips from iVillage and you can see them here.


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