Stopping a cold before it starts

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(KPRC) — According to the Centers for Disease Control symptoms of flu can include fever or chills, cough, sore throat, body aches, headaches and fatigue. Cold symptoms, while you may still feel terrible, are usually milder than the flu and come with a runny or stuffy nose.

Here are the ways health experts recommend you load up your arsenal to fight off whatever you come in contact with:

1) Use a Humidifier - During winter months, low humidity dries out your nasal passages, but experts say a humidifier can help your body to trap germs before they invade your system.

2) Vitamin C, Zinc, Vitamin D - Oranges and OJ help because they're packed with vitamin C. Zinc can lessen the duration of a cold. Vitamin D is important because your cells depend on it to activate infection-fighting responses. Vitamin D is absorbed from sunlight, also found in salmon, beef, egg yolks, milk, cheese and mushrooms.

3) - Wash Your Hands - Baylor College of Medicine physician assistant Isabel Valdez says one of the healthiest practices to avoid viruses is good, long hand washing. Adding friction to the palms, between fingers, under the nails and scrubbing for at least 20 seconds is how health professionals deal with germs all day and don't get sick.

4) Flu Vaccine - Valdez also says you need the flu vaccine to protect you in case you come in contact with the deadly virus. "It launches an arsenal to try and help your body," Valdez said.

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