Archived Story

Tips for a healthy, happy holiday season

Published 3:39pm Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The bells are jingling, the lights are twinkling and Christmas songs are filling the airwaves of local radio stations. That can only mean that it’s Christmas time.

We’ve recently spoken with city officials from both the fire department and the police department about safety tips to help ensure that your Christmas is merry.

The Center for Disease Control offers even more tips to help make sure you have a healthy and happy holiday season.

  • Wash your hands often.

Keeping hands clean is one of the most important steps you can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. Wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow, not your hands.

  •  Manage stress.

The holidays don’t need to take a toll on your health. Keep a check on over-commitment and over-spending. Balance work, home, and play. Get support from family and friends. Keep a relaxed and positive outlook. Make sure to get proper sleep.

  •  Travel safely.

Whether you’re traveling across town or around the world, help ensure your trip is safe. Don’t drink and drive, and don’t let someone else drink and drive. Wear a seat belt every time you drive or ride in a motor vehicle. Always buckle your child in the car using a child safety seat, booster seat, or seat belt according to his/her height, weight, and age.

  •  Prevent injuries.

Injuries can occur anywhere and some often occur around the holidays. Use step stools instead of furniture when hanging decorations.

Most residential fires occur during the winter months. Keep candles away from children, pets, walkways, trees, and curtains. Never leave fireplaces, stoves, or candles unattended. Don’t use generators, grills, or other gasoline- or charcoal-burning devices inside your home or garage.

  • Eat healthy, and be active.

With balance and moderation, you can enjoy the holidays the healthy way. Choose fresh fruit as a festive and sweet substitute for candy. Select just one or two of your favorites from the host of tempting foods. Find fun ways to stay active, such as dancing to your favorite holiday music. Be active for at least 2½ hours a week. Help kids and teens be active for at least 1 hour a day.

  • Handle and prepare food safely.

As you prepare holiday meals, keep you and your family safe from food-related illness. Wash hands and surfaces often. Avoid cross-contamination by keeping raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs (including their juices) away from ready-to-eat foods and eating surfaces.

And most of all, make sure to enjoy the holiday season.

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