Health & Wellness

4 Ways to Help Your Family Stay Healthy through the Fall Spike

We all know that back to school also means back to germs. This time of year is known as the “Fall Spike” because it’s when our lovely children bring home all sorts of viruses and germs to infect the entire family, from colds to severe asthma flare-ups to the flu. Gee, thanks.

I’ve already gotten that dreaded phone call once this month: “Come get your barfy kid!” Fortunately, there are some preventative measures we can take to help our families stay healthier and get us through the Fall Spike.


Eat Healthy

Of course it’s important to make healthy food choices year round, but it’s even more so during cold and flu season. Feed your family nutrient-rich foods to ensure their bodies have the resources needed to stay healthy. Pay extra attention to what goes in your shopping cart and make sure you’re picking the right kind of foods that will help keep your immune systems strong during the Fall Spike and heading into this year’s cold and flu season.

If you could use a little extra help (and don’t we all?) head in to your local Loblaws or Your Independent Grocer to book a consultation with the in-store registered dietitian. He or she can assess your dietary habits, provide one-on-one nutrition counselling to help you make healthy food choices for your family, assist with meal planning, and provide guidance around best ways to eat for chronic conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol. Learn how to prepare for cold and flu season with nutrient-rich foods and recipes that help support good overall and immune health for you and your family.

Wash Your Hands

One of the easiest things you can do to limit the spread of germs this fall is to wash your hands often. Teach your kids how to wash their hands properly too! That means washing with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, scrubbing the front and back of their hands, between their fingers, and under their nails. I taught my girls that 20 seconds is about as long as it takes to sing the Alphabet Song. Luckily they’ve also learned to sing the Alphabet Song quietly in their heads!


Stay Home

If you or your child is vomiting or running a fever over 100, please, please do everyone a favour and keep your germs at home. Stay home and take care of yourself instead. You should be vomit-free and fever-free for at least 24 hours before returning to work or school.

Oh, and while you’re home sick, forget that myth about starving a fever. Feed your body’s immune response with healthy, nutrition-rich foods like this homemade chicken vegetable soup made with sweet potatoes, carrots, cauliflower, and zucchini.

Get Your Flu Shot

Regardless of what else you do, flu season will be here before you know it. Taking a few minutes to get your flu shot could save you from 14 days of misery or even more serious health complications. In 2015, over 5,000 Canadians were hospitalized with the flu, including more than 1,500 kids. Not only is a flu shot your first defense against the flu, but you’ll also help protect others from getting sick, including children, the elderly, and immuno-compromised people. Flu shots are available now at your local Real Canadian Superstore pharmacy.

From the food aisle to the pharmacy, your local Loblaws or Superstore is your one stop shop to help you and your family stay healthy during cold and flu season. Book a free appointment with an in-store registered dietitian to learn more about the foods that can help support a healthy immune system, and while you’re there, consider visiting the in-store pharmacist for your flu shot at the same time.


Disclosure: This a sponsored conversation. Nevertheless, all opinions in this post are completely honest and my own.

Leave a Comment


  • We have stopped so many cold and flus by just washing our hands. When we were really in a bad season I use to wipe down all the doorknobs and light switches phones, remotes daily as well.

  • Washing hand thoroughly is so important and kids have to be taught how to do it. I’ve been and had my flu shot another important thing to do and that’s not only for yourself but for the community too.

  • great and important ways of staying healthy! we are in the middle of telling our girls the importance of hand washing and coughing in their elbows. One thing we need to do still is flu shots!

  • I dread the call from school saying the kids are sick! Luckily, they have built up their immunity from attending daycare since they were tiny so rarely get sick these days (touch wood)

  • All great tips, every year I get the flu shot and I also like to carry a small bottle of hand sanitizer with me, comes in handy when shopping and touching the dirty carts

  • Definitely agree with getting your flu shots and staying home when you’re sick – battling through it isn’t worth getting everyone else around you ill!