Tips from a nurse on how to prevent the flu

From what to eat to how to clean, flu prevention basics

During her 35-year nursing career, Lynn Morris, R.N., has cared for thousands of sick patients at Norton Healthcare. Yet, she rarely gets sick herself.

Lynn’s advice for staying healthy: Get a yearly flu shot, eat flu-fighting foods and practice good hygiene.

A beekeeper in her free time, Lynn swears by the healing power of honey.

“Honey slows the growth of microbes that can cause infection,” she said. “I also believe it can help prevent viral infections, like colds and coughs.”

Other flu-fighting foods

Lemon juice

Use lemon juice in cooking and squeeze it into your water or tea. Lemon contains a lot of vitamin C and has antimicrobial properties.

Ginger root

Ginger is a warming spice and a potent anti-inflammatory. It can ease vomiting, diarrhea and nausea.


Vegetables that contain vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant, include leafy greens, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower.

Chicken noodle soup

Carnosine, a compound in chicken, helps slow inflammation caused by infections. Hot chicken noodle soup eases congestion.

Flu treatment when you need it

Norton Healthcare has convenient options for flu symptom treatment in kids and adults, including 24/7 access to a provider in person or online.

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Good hygiene practices

Wash your hands

Frequent hand washing for at least 20 seconds using warm, soapy water is an effective way to avoid the flu. Afterward, do not touch your face after touching surfaces. The flu gets into your body through your nose, mouth or eyes.

Cover up

Sneeze into your elbow or a tissue to avoid spreading germs. Throw tissues away immediately.

Keep it clean

Frequently clean and disinfect countertops, sinks, remote controls and light switches — where the flu virus can live. Disinfect your cellphone daily; it travels everywhere with you and often is near your face.

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