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Regular Exercise Could Help Protect You From Colds

11:48 AM, Jan 7, 2008   |    comments
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By Deborah Ferguson KXAS/NBC News Channel New research suggests exercise can keep people from catching a cold, and the exercise involved doesn't need to be intense. Baylor Family Medical Center family doctor Jane Sadler's basic advice for preventing a cold centers on hygiene. "The best thing to do is wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands," she said. However, she agrees there is some benefit gained from exercise done at moderate intensity. "We know that 30 minutes of brisk walking a day, five days a week, may be all you need to decrease your chances of getting a cold," she said. "Exercise increases our leukocyte counts. Leukocytes are white blood cells that actually fight infections, so by exercising, your white blood cell counts temporarily elevates and that will help in fighting colds symptoms and getting rid of viruses." Sadler stressed balance with good hygiene and warned that over-training weakens the immune system and increases the chance of a cold.

NBC News Channel

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