Don’t fear the headlines. There are several impactful things you can do in order to avoid getting infected with the potentially deadly coronavirus. During a recent appearance on Fox and Friends, Dr. Mehmet Oz put the coronavirus “panic” into perspective, providing some simple tactics to combat the spread of the illness—and offering ways to prepare for the worst. Here, the international health expert outlines “action steps” we can all take in order to keep ourselves and others safe during this scary time.
Get Enough Sleep
According to the CDC, not getting enough sleep is associated with numerous health implications, including chronic disease and mental conditions. Dr. Oz points out that getting seven hours per night is an easy immunity-boosting tactic.
Another effective way to boost immunity is via exercise, points out Dr. Oz. “Aim for 30 minutes every other day,” he suggests.
Use a Humidifier
Change Your Air Filters
When was the last time you changed your air filters? This might be a good time to check. “HEPA filters decrease the number of virus particles in the air,” points out Dr. Oz.
While meditation might not seem like an obvious tool to use in the fight against coronavirus, it can actually help. Dr. Oz points out that by keeping your stress at a minimum, meditating can be immunity-boosting.
Don’t Shake Hands
Dr. Oz is a big supporter of social distancing, pointing out that touching others is a no-go during the coronavirus crisis. “Handshaking transfers 10X more germs that fist-bumping,” he points out.
Embrace the Power of a Good Head Nod
If fist-bumping is a little too Jersey Shore for your liking, forgo contact altogether and start using the head nod as your preferred method of greeting, he suggests.
Eliminate Face Touching
All experts—including Dr. Oz—are stressing the importance of changing your face-touching habits. “Coronaviruses typically live for a week on many surfaces,” explains Dr. Oz. “Fingers transfer the virus to your eyes, nose, or mouth dozens of times per hour.” If you must touch your face, make sure your hands are clean first.
Wash Your Hands
Washing your hands is one of the best ways to keep the coronavirus out of your life. “Only 5% of us wash our hands with soap and water for 20 seconds,” notes Dr. Oz. If you don’t feel like counting, just sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice. Also, make sure to dry your hands post-wash.
Use Hand Sanitizer With at Least 60% Alcohol
If hand washing isn’t an option, the second best way to clean your hands is by using a hand sanitizer. Just make sure it is at least 60% alcohol, reminds Dr. Oz.
Use disinfectant sprays instead of wipes, which can spread germs from one surface to another. Let the surface remain wet for three minutes before drying.
Stock Up on Household Supplies
While you don’t need to buy out your local Costco, Dr. Oz suggests keeping a 2-week supply of toilet paper, soap, detergent—just in case you need to be quarantined.
Again, you don’t need to equip yourself for a zombie apocalypse. Instead keep a two-week supply of “shelf-stable pantry goods and freezer-friendly items,” urges Dr. Oz.
Again, focus on keeping a two-week supply of any prescription or over-the-counter drugs.
Eat Fruits and Veggies
Another immunity-boosting tactic to keep yourself virus-free is via your diet. “Eating leafy greens and fruits high in vitamins like citruses, blackberries, and kiwi provide your body with essential vitamins and minerals,” Dr. Oz explains.
Take Vitamin D3
In order to boost immunity, Dr. Oz suggests taking 1200 IU daily of vitamin D3.
Get the Flu Shot
While the flu shot won’t keep you from getting infected with COVID-19, it will protect you from the flu. Dr. Oz suggests getting a flu shot in order to “avoid confusing seasonal flu with COVID-19.”
If You Do Get Sick, Amp Up on Vitamins
If you do end up getting sick, make boosting immunity a priority by taking certain vitamins. Dr. Oz suggests daily doses of Zinc (80 mg), Vitamin C (250 mg twice per day), Beta Glucan (250 mg), and Elderberry (Syrup or lozenges four times a day for five days).
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