Health & Fit Your Flu Shot May Protect Against COVID, Studies Suggest
This might be your most important flu shot ever
We don’t need people with the (largely preventable) flu flooding our hospitals in a pandemic.In the absence of a coherent federal response, the novel coronavirus continues to spread across the country, with several states still battling active outbreaks. Experts estimate it could continue to hospitalize thousands and kill hundreds of people a day into September — likely with more spikes in the coming months.
Aside from wearing a mask, social distancing and practicing good hand hygiene, there is one thing you can do this fall that might lower your risk of contracting COVID-19: Get a flu shot. That's the conclusion of a new study, which found that hospital workers who had been vaccinated against the flu were less likely to be infected with coronavirus than those who didn't get the shot. Read on, and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these .
How might a flu shot protect you from COVID?
In the , which was released in preprint form and has not yet been peer-reviewed, researchers in the Netherlands looked at hospital databases to gauge COVID infection rates among employees who had received the flu vaccine. They found that workers who had been vaccinated had a 39 percent lower chance of testing positive for coronavirus by June 1 of this year.
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Why might this be? There's a growing body of scientific evidence about a concept called "trained innate immunity" — simply, that vaccines may boost the "first responders" of the immune system overall, helping them fight off a range of pathogens and diseases.
Take the results of the Dutch study with a grain of salt, however, and remember that correlation isn't causation. The study doesn't definitively prove that the flu vaccine is protective against COVID-19. The people in the Dutch study who received it might simply be more health-conscious and more likely to engage in healthy behaviors that lowered their risk of catching coronavirus.
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These Chips at Aldi are Being Recalled
A recall of cinnamon apple chips sold at Aldi and on Amazon has been issued because of possible Salmonella contamination.Both snacks are produced by the Seneca Snack Company, who voluntarily issued the recall. The Seneca Cinnamon Apple Chips come in a 0.7 ounce or 2.5-ounce package. The 0.7-ounce variety has a UPC code of 0 18195-70140 4 and an individual package code of 26JUN2021. The larger bag has a UPC code of 0 18195-70100 8 and an individual package code of 28JUN2021. The Clancy's Cinnamon Apple Chips also comes in a 2.5-ounce bag and has two possible individual package codes of 26JUN2021 and 27JUN2021. (Related: 100 Unhealthiest Foods on the Planet.
Other studies suggest link between flu shot, lower COVID risk
But, as , other recent studies have found a potential connection between vaccines and a lower risk of COVID-19. In two papers published in June and September, researchers found lower COVID-19 rates in parts of Italy where more adults over age 65 had gotten the flu vaccine. And in July, researchers at the Mayo Clinic reported that adults who had gotten vaccines for flu, polio, chickenpox, measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib), hepatitis A or B, or pneumococcal disease over the past five years were less likely to test positive for COVID-19 than people who hadn't gotten any of those vaccines.
Whether this intriguing theory is ultimately proven or not, health experts advise that adults should get the flu vaccine every year. It's especially important during the coronavirus pandemic: It will lower your chance of being infected with the flu and COVID-19 at the same time, which can lead to worse outcomes; avoiding the flu can keep your immune system at its strongest; and you'll be less likely to need medical resources for the flu that may also be needed by people suffering from COVID and other serious illnesses.
Why the flu shot is important for kids and how to vaccinate your child safely
Children over the age of six months can get the flu shot, but you need to wait until your child is at least 2 years old to get the nasal spray.But there are also some necessary precautions you should know before getting your kids a flu shot. Here's what you need to know about flu shots for kids and the best way to vaccinate your child.
How to stay healthy
As for yourself, do everything you can to prevent getting—and spreading—COVID-19 in the first place: Mask, get tested if you think you have coronavirus, avoid crowds (and bars, and house parties), practice social distancing, only run essential errands, wash your hands regularly, disinfect frequently touched surfaces, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these .
Dr. Fauci Says How You Can "Innocently" Get Infected .
Dr. Fauci is warning about COVID-19 as families gather for Thanksgiving. “Infections that we're seeing now are infections” from “a social gathering.”"We're now at over 250,000 deaths, a quarter of a million deaths. You could get well over 300,000 and close to even more than that if we don't turn things around," Fauci said. "I don't want this to be a doomsday statement. It is within our power to not let those numbers happen," he said. "The fact is, you don't have to accept those numbers as being inevitable.