Going outside in the cold won’t necessarily bring you a cold. The cold which is more hospitable to viruses, so better gear for a strong immune system.
It’s not the cold that makes catching a cold or the flu easier. Many viruses, such as rhinoviruses (colds) and flu stay infectious longer and multiply in colder temperatures. This is why the transmissibility of these viruses is easier in winter.
It’s not just the cold winter air that’s causing the problem. Dry air, in addition to cold, is linked to flu outbreaks and helps the flu virus stay infectious longer. Another factor is that people in winter receive less sunlight, which is a source of vitamin D, which is essential for the immune system. Physical activity is also less in winter.
During the cold season people spend more time indoors and this leads to more contact with others. Respiratory viruses spread within a six-foot radius of an infected person. The cold dries out the eyes and mucous membranes of the nose and throat. The virus can attach itself easily during these steps. It doesn’t mean getting sick if you are cold and wet, but there are tricks to prevent annual ailments:
- wash your hands often
- avoid touching your face
- stay hydrated; eight glasses of water a day is a good goal
- a balanced diet: dark green leafy vegetables are rich in vitamins; eggs, fortified milk, salmon and tuna have vitamin D
- stay physically active, even during the winter
- clean hard, high-touch surfaces often
- if your nose or throat gets dry in the winter, use a humidifier
- take the flu vaccine
- have had the anti-Covid 19 vaccine.
- Will Going Out In The Cold Give You A Cold? (iflscience.com)