Cold and flu season is upon us, and while there are plenty of resources you could use to figure out how to treat your illness, there aren’t as many that can tell you what not to do. Some foods, behaviors, activities and popular remedies might be doing you more harm than good when you’ve got the sniffles. Instead of winging it next time you’re feeling under the weather, read up on this list of things you shouldn’t do if you get sick this season.
“Going into work when you’re sick doesn’t do you or your co-workers any favors.”
Go into work
Taking a sick day isn’t always easy, especially if you’re in the middle of a big project or have to find someone to cover for you while you’re out. But going into work when you’re sick doesn’t do you or your co-workers any favors. For starters, you’re not likely to perform at your best, which could hurt the quality of your work. Chances are, you’ll be too distracted by aches, pains and the lack of tissues in your office to get any real work done.
Heading into work when you’re sick can also spread whatever germs are wreaking havoc on your immune system. None of your colleagues want to catch what you have. If you work with customers, especially in the food service industry, going into work sick can cause major problems and put your company’s reputation on the line. When in doubt, stay home.
Even if you choose to stay home from work, you shouldn’t be trying to take care of other things you have to do around the house when you have a cold. Since your immune system is compromised, going about your usual routine with all its activities and stresses will only weaken it further. Take a step back from your daily grind and get plenty of rest. With any luck, you’ll get over your illness sooner and will be able to handle your to-do list.
Light exercise can actually help when you’re sick.
Skip your workout
You might feel as though you shouldn’t partake in your usual workout when you’re sick, but that’s not always the best idea. As long as you don’t have any aches and pains and you bring down your intensity level a bit, you should be OK to exercise. Everyday Health pointed out that light workouts can actually help you get through a cold faster and make you feel better. Just make sure you stay hydrated, since drinking plenty of fluids is important to overcoming a cold and exercising safely.
"You're better off avoiding intense activities when you're sick or recovering from a cold."
Work out hard
You might feel well enough to go for a long-distance run or finish your strength-training routine at the gym, but you're better off avoiding intense activities like this when you're sick or recovering from a cold. As Health magazine pointed out, you'll be spreading a lot of germs if you head into the gym and work out on all your usual routines, which won't make you any new gym buddies. Intense workouts can also stress your body out more than it already is, which can slow down your recovery.
Eat fatty comfort foods
It's understandable to want to chow down on your favorite comfort foods and forgo healthy eating when you're sick, but indulging in fatty foods won't help you feel better - at least physically. According to The Huffington Post, fatty foods are harder for your body to digest and may suppress your immune system. Stick to your regular meal preparation, but consider adding healthy sickness busters like chicken soup, ginger and garlic. You may be surprised how fast you recover!