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HEALTH HINTS

Health Disaster Management Plan

By: Jose Maria M. Villarama IIHealth Disaster Management Plan

The Philippine holiday season is one of the longest in the world.  It is also the busiest and most fast-paced, with parties and gatherings being held left and right. It is also a time when overall well-being is overlooked and infections are widespread.

The following are some tips to have healthy and worry-free holidays:

  • Put on an “armor” – Before the onset of the cold weather, get a flu shot.  While this provides antibodies for last season’s more virulent viral strains, it can help boost one’s defenses against the flu virus in general.  Taking multivitamins, especially the ones that strengthen the immune system, is also a good deterrent against disease. Going for a routine check up and monitoring vital stats such as blood pressure, sugar and cholesterol levels, and getting maintenance medication for them, if necessary, is also the best way to detect or prevent any health-related red flags.
  • Practice hand hygiene – Since cough, colds, and flu are common during the holiday season, washing hands properly to prevent the transmission of diseases is very important.  Having hand sanitizers at the ready, especially when outdoors, also helps. Aside from respiratory illnesses, hand hygiene also prevents digestive problems and food-poisoning, usually associated with food preparation.
  • Get enough sleep – Partying every night will definitely take its toll on one’s health. But no one wants to be a Scrooge or a party-pooper and skip parties. The best thing to do is to show up at a party for a short time, move on to the next one, and head to bed when it’s getting too late.  Taking quick naps before heading to the next celebration also works.
  • Eat and drink moderately – Most people feel that the holiday season legitimizes bingeing and overeating.  After all, it’s only once a year when rich, special, classic dishes abound and booze overflows. However, it is very important to watch what one eats, especially if one has eaten too much salty, sweet and fatty food. It also helps to add fruits and vegetables to each meal as they offset excessive meat consumption.
  • Drink plenty of water – This not only washes away the alcohol that one tends to take in excess during the holidays, but also excretes toxins and excess salts ingested from too much eating.
  • Stay active – Many think that all the eating and bingeing during the holiday season is also a free pass at going to the gym; after all, the body needs a break from strenuous exercise too. But maintaining a good level of physical activity helps improve blood circulation and may prevent weight gain during the holidays.
  • Prepare food properly – Aside from observing hand hygiene, make sure that the food is cooked properly and doesn’t spoil easily.
  • Prevent fire hazards – Do not overload electrical outlets and make sure to use Christmas lights that have passed quality control standards.  Do not use firecrackers to avoid fire and firecracker-related injuries.

Nothing beats having a plan to have stress-free and happy holidays!

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