Ask The Pediatrician: Six Ways To Stay Healthy

We are 80% more likely to get a cold in winter. So making sure our immune system is in tip-top condition is important. In this Ask The Pediatrician report, you'll uncover six ways to avoid getting sick - no matter what time of year.

Little Allison's getting over the flu.

Her mother, Amy Phillips, describes what it was like. "Really high fever, shakes, congestion and cough."

While it's common this time of year, Dr. Clancy McNally says following six smart strategies can help you avoid getting sick.

Step 1:
"Usually we recommend people get seven to nine hours of sleep a night and most people are getting like six-and-a-half to seven. So if you can try to catch up on some of that - building up some of that sleep store, it may help you fight things a little bit better," said Dr. McNally.

Step 2:
Next, get the day started off right with a hearty breakfast.

A warm bowl of oatmeal not only gives you energy to get through the day, it's also filling, which means you're less likely to give in to those comfort foods we tend to crave this time of year. Foods high in sugar and fat can actually suppress your immune system.

Step 3:
Make sure you get five fruits and vegetables a day.

Dr. McNally said, "Some of the fruit right now are in season. You got all of your oranges and citrus fruits that has all of your Vitamin C that helps you fight all of those illnesses."

Step 4:
Her Fourth suggestion: Think Milk. Dairy products not only help boost your immune system but they help keep our bones strong.

Step 5:
Get Active.

"I think a lot of times our sickness comes because people are in and gathered around each other and passing germs around," Dr. McNally said.

And exercise. If you don't, you increase your risk for illness.

"I try to give her vitamins and I give her fruits and vegetables," Amy said.

Mom's hoping that will keep her from coming back to the doctor's office anytime soon.

Step 6:
Dr. McNally's sixth and final suggestion: Keep your mind healthy.

About the Author...
Serese Cole
Serese is no stranger to the Midwest. She was born and raised in Kansas City and after years of moving from state to state - has called Nebraska home the last decade.
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