SUMMER’S END also marks the beginning of flu season.
The flu is a contagious respiratory
illness caused by influenza viruses.
People with the flu may have a fever, a
cough, a sore throat, muscle and body
aches, fatigue and a runny or stuffy nose.
Although most people with the flu
recover within two weeks, others experience a more severe illness that results in
complications such as pneumonia, hospitalization or even death.
The flu is spread by coughing, sneez-
ing or talking, or by touching surfaces
that are contaminated with flu virus. It
can spread quickly, because those
infected with the flu can infect others
before symptoms develop. You can pre-
vent the spread of the flu by staying home
when you are sick, washing your hands fre-
quently and keeping your workspaces clean.
According to the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention (CDC; cdc.gov/flu),
getting an annual flu vaccine is the first and
best way to protect yourself and your family
from the flu. Flu vaccinations can reduce
flu illnesses, doctors’ visits, and missed
work and school due to flu, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations. The more
people get vaccinated, the more everyone
will be protected from the flu, including
the elderly, very young children, pregnant
women and those with certain health conditions who are more vulnerable to serious
Typically available starting in August,
TO LEARN MORE ABOUT COSTCO PHARMACY, CLICK ON THE “PHARMACY” LINK
AT COSTCO.COM OR VISIT YOUR LOCAL COSTCO PHARMACIST.
Supplementation with vitamins C and E
port healthy cells by helping to neutralize
free radicals. Vitamins C and E, antioxidants and essential nutrients, are commonly found in fruits and vegetables.
However, if your diet is low in these antiox-idant-rich foods, supplementation may be
an option to help fill nutrient gaps.
High-quality vitamin C and vitamin E
supplements are available in Costco ware-
houses and on Costco.com to help you meet
your antioxidant nutrient needs. If you are
ing a vitamin C
E supplement to
your wellness rou-
tine for antioxidant
support, talk to your
doctor and look for inde-
pendent verification of product quality
and purity through the United States
the flu shot is formulated every year to
best match the influenza virus strains
that are most likely to spread and cause
illness. Flu shots contain inactivated
pieces of the influenza virus, which helps
your body recognize and kill the influ-
enza virus if you are exposed to it. Several
types of influenza vaccines are available
this season, which protect against three
or four types of influenza virus.
As you age, your body has a harder
time developing an immune response.
Because of that, patients who are over ;;
may benefit from a high-dose or adjuvant
vaccine. These vaccines either contain
higher amounts of virus pieces or include
a substance (the adjuvant) to boost the
body’s immune response. In previous flu
seasons, the nasal spray flu vaccine was
preferred for most children. Recent data
suggests that the nasal vaccine may not
be as effective as previously thought.
Today, childhood vaccinations with the
flu shot are recommended, according to
It takes about two weeks for your body
to mount an immune response against
the flu, so it is important to get your flu
shot before influenza is spread in the
community. Although you can still get
the flu if you’ve had a flu shot, you may
have a milder illness if you do get sick.
Search “flu shots” on Costco.com, or
visit your Costco pharmacist to find out
more about the flu shot. Check with your
local Costco Pharmacy for flu shot availability. Flu shots are covered by most
insurance plans at no cost to you. Vaccine
and age restrictions vary by state.
Beat the flu
OXIDATIVE STRESS has been shown to
have an impact on overall health.
Unhealthy compounds that form in the
body, known as free radicals, can be
caused by a variety of factors, such as
normal metabolic reactions, cigarette
smoke, pollution and sun exposure. If
free-radical activity is left uncontrolled,
the health of the body can suffer, and
oxidative stress can occur.
Antioxidants are nutrients that sup-