Drinking the tea and breathing in steam stimulates the cilia—the hair follicles in the nose—to move out germs more efficiently “Research shows that diets that are too low in protein can deplete the immune system. So make sure to get protein-rich foods throughout the day, especially fish, eggs and yogurt. Lemon thins mucus, and honey is antibacterial.”
“Gyms are crawling with sweaty towels, dirty sneakers and other germy grossness. Instead of sitting directly on a mat or bench, try to place a clean towel on it first. Any equipment that you have to touch—like free weights or bicycle handlebars, clean first with antibacterial wipes.
Sanitize your office space:
“Clean everything that gets touched by lots of people—microwaves, fax-machine keys, doorknobs, elevator buttons, the armrests on your chair—with a good disinfectant at least once a week, even if it looks clean. It’s just basic hygiene. Rhinoviruses can live on surfaces for up to 48 hours.
“When walking past another person and he is sneezing or coughing, gently and slowly breathe out until beyond the 6- to 10-foot zone around him. This will keep you from inhaling the air he just contaminated.”
Live by the pen:
“Do a daily nasal rinse with a bulb syringe to flush out viruses and help clear secretions. You can buy nasal saline irrigation at the drugstore—you can make your own sinus rinse: Mix 3 teaspoons iodide-free salt and 1 teaspoon baking soda. Add 1 teaspoon of this mixture to 1 cup distilled or cooled boiled water.
Keep your hands to yourself:
“Never use water fountains or the railings on stairs. They’ve got the prints of hundreds of germs hands (and mouths!), and they don’t get sanitized as often as other surfaces, like sinks. Use your own water bottle.”
“Receive massages once a month to increase my circulation, which boosts immunity by nourishing, cells with more oxygen and blood. It also makes one relaxed and less stressed, and when you’re less stressed, you’re less likely to be a germ magnet.”
“Anything you use on people’s mouths, like lip brushes, clean more often than other tools to avoid passing germs around, always clean lipsticks with an alcohol wipe.”
Call it a day:
“Your strategy is to double down on trying to get enough sleep, even if it’s just a power nap on a plane. Research shows that our bodies need seven to eight hours of sleep in order to stimulate an immune response from our ‘natural killer cells,’ which attack viruses. Sleep is most reliable defense against infection.”
Protect your paws:
“Wash your hands often and pat them fully dry so they don’t get flaky, which can allow germs in. Then moisturize.”
Don’t talk dirty:
“Phones are too necessary. During the day, one might place it on a counter or use it in between opening doors, pushing elevator buttons or shaking hands with friends or colleagues. Cleaning phone with a sanitizing wipe regularly cuts back on the germs that get near your face and mouth.”