October 27, 2015

It's that time of year in the dorms. While we get scared by haunted houses on the weekends in October, the actual phantom over our heads is the flu. Midterms are coming up, conference meets and games for sports are approaching, and perhaps theatre shows are closing. Long story short, there is no time for the flu. Ain't nobody got time for that! 

Keeping up your health as a college student is almost as difficult as balancing work, school, and a social life. Both feats seem nearly impossible (nervous laugh). However, what if you could avoid a cold and keep up your nutrition. This sounds hard, however it's just as easy as changing up your diet. Below are some foods that boost your immune system, and are also good for you!

1. Citrus
Vitamin C is the number one food that helps keep your immune system running. Lemons, limes, grapefruits, and oranges are easy to fit into any meal. 

2. Garlic
Garlic simultaneously helps fight infections and is also a great agent in balancing cholesterol. Pinch it into your sauces and dishes to add a little zing to every meal. 

3. Ginger
Just like garlic, ginger adds a zing to your meals and drinks. Adding it to a pressed juice would not only help keep your mind sharp for the day, but it will also wake you up. Like vitamin C, ginger can keep a cold from even taking hold. 

4. Spinach
Spinach is rich in vitamin C, beta-carotene, and antioxidants. Wilt it in pasta or enjoy a salad on it. 

5. Almonds
Almonds have vitamin E, a fat-soluble vitamin that is key to a healthy immune system. A handful a day keeps the cold away!

6. Green Tea
Green tea is packed with antioxidants like EGCG and flavonoids. The amino acid, L-theanine , that helps fight colds is found in it. Luckily, Starbucks makes many delicious drinks including this delicious way to fight a cold. 

Although most college campuses ban tobacco, smoking still occurs on the sidewalks and illegally in dorm rooms. Being sick and simultaneously affected by pollutants is not a pleasurable combination. With October being National Health Lung Month, be wary of smoke and the pollutants that come with it. These toxins to be wary of include radon and asbestos. These can be carcinogenic, highly dangerous, and lead to cancers like mesothelioma, which is caused by exposure to asbestos. Here is a fact sheet from the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance about healthy lungs:

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