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flu

It's time to celebrate one of the biggest holidays in the employment calendar; National Sickie Day. *Tosses confetti*

We figured it's time to do some healthy digging and find out what gems people were using to call in sick to work, and we also desired to know the dumbest excuses too. Natural curiosity gets the better of us…

Employment Law Experts (ELAS) are saying that the estimated number of employees calling in sick in 2017 on National Sickie Day was… wait for it…350,000 WORKERS. Wow.

Why is the first week of February just too unbearable for everyone to face their jobs? A combination of factors are predicted, such as the first weekend after Dry January and the first post-Christmas pay-day.

mean girls wink GIF by T. Kyle

ELAS have also predicted that National Sickie Day will cost the British economy around £45 million (€51.3 million), due to hours lost, wages and overtime. Good God, that's a LOT of wasted labour.

According to a survey by AXA PPP, using the flu excuse seemed to be satisfactory for four out of 10 bosses. However, eight percent of managers weren't convinced by a single one of the nine 'best excuses' listed below…

The number one excuse for ringing in sick (according to the boss) was the flu, with back pain coming in second, and injury caused by accident in third place.

Stress, elective surgery, depression, anxiety, common cold and migraine finished up the top nine, with 'none of the above' in 10th place, meaning there were some other crackers outside of the top 10 that we just NEED to hear.

According to ELAS, the absolute WORST excuses in 2016 for missing work were:

“My only pair of work trousers is in the wash”, “It’s my dog’s birthday and I need to arrange a party for him”, “The dog ate my shoes”, “I got arrested”, “I lost my PPE”, and of course; “I stayed out partying last night and haven’t had any sleep”.

Classic. Other contenders were; “My friend is on annual leave so I can’t get a lift”, “I have no way to get to work” and “My wife earns more than me so I have to look after the kids”

Ah lads, you've got to do better than that. A bit of creativity would go a long way with that lot…

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We can already hear it; the snot-sniffing in the office, the ‘Jaysus! I’m frozen!’ as we close windows and doors in the hopes of keeping the heat in.

Yes, the evenings are getting darker, the days are getting colder and flu season is well and truly upon us.

But we don’t have to live in fear of the day we’ll wake up with a runny nose and a throat like sandpaper, no there are things we can do to prevent it.

While they might not guarantee a flu-free winter, these ten things can help boost your immune system which will make it harder for the pesky thing to start.

1. Garlic

2. Sweet potato

3. Turmeric

4. Dark leafy greens

5. Onions

6. Berries

7. Beef

8. Green tea

9. Pinto beans 

10. Chicken soup

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Some 850,000 doses of the flu vaccine have been purchased by the HSE in preparation for a feared epidemic this winter, with an extra 100,000 ordered as a “contingency” supply.

The news comes after reports from the NHS in the UK found that the jab is failing to protect vulnerable groups such as children and the elderly.

Dr Mai Mannix spoke to the Sunday Independent about flu season, “Those at risk include people aged 65 years and older, adults and children with a long-term medical condition.”

According to the paper, the vaccine currently being distributed by GPs and pharmacists is just 40 – 60 per cent effective, though the HSE has urged anyone who is eligible for the jab to avail of the service.

Medical professionals admitted that they are concerned about an epidemic breaking out after Australia experienced its worst flu season in over twenty years.

Australia’s health minister expressed her concerns about the epidemic, “People are not just getting the flu, they’re getting very, very sick with this flu. Don’t dismiss your symptoms. The reality is we can’t beat nature.”

People have been warned to be extra diligent. Doctors believe that knowing the symptoms can help catch the virus at an earlier stage.

The symptoms include a fever, body aches, a cough, headaches, exhaustion, slight congestion, a sore throat and diarrhoea and vomiting.

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We are one step closer to finding a cure for the common cold and we have Irish researchers to thank.

Scientists from Trinity College Dublin are part of an international team which may have tapped into the cure for one of the most common viruses worldwide.

Published in the scientific journal, Nature Communications, the study looks at how viruses cause disease in humans.

Professor John O'Leary, the Chair of Pathology at Trinity College, revealed the team had discovered that an ancient cell-process in plants and mammals can have the same effect on viruses in humans.

"It's been around for a long time probably in excess 1.5 billion years," he said 

"This is an extremely old conserved biologically process which is found in plants and we are aware that it also enhances viral disease in life.

"The identification of the protein but also precisely where it is in the cell is hugely important."

Here's hoping those seasonal sniffles will soon be a thing of the past.

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Let's be honest, when it comes to politicians (both here and across the pond), few possess the same charm and charisma as Barack Obama.

And while it's hard to emulate Barack's aura, the vast majority of politicians have, at the very least, something which helps them stand out from the crowd… right?

And in the case of former Labour leader, Ed Miliband, it's his uncanny ability to personify the common cold.

Resigned to little more than a stock image at the weekend, poor ol' Ed saw his head plastered across an American news station who decided to use his image – along with a variety of other stock images – to highlight the perils associated with flu season.

And Twitter is unsurprisingly having a field day.
 

 

 

 

 

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Having recently been linked to depression, often associated with weight gain and commonly blamed for breakouts, it’s safe to say the contraceptive pill has a bit of a bad rep.

But thankfully for its users, there could be one unusual benefit to taking progesterone only and combined pills – and no it’s not just the prevention of unplanned pregnancies.

Research conducted at the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests that the pill could help prevent common illnesses like the flu.

Taking female mice as participants, the study found that animals with higher levels of progesterone in their bodies had better functioning immune systems than those in possession of lower doses of the hormone.

Because progesterone is found in the majority of pills, those who’ve been prescribed the contraceptive could have boosted immune systems and therefore be better able to fight Winter ailments.

While it is still very early days, if the study’s findings are found to be applicable to humans, it would mean that the pill could have real benefits for parts of the body beyond the reproductive system.

Feat image: iStock

GIFs: Giphy

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If you're not suffering from a cold or flu yourself, the person beside you in work probably is. It seems like it's the season EVERYONE is getting sick – so the time to take action is now! 

This smoothie will help ward off that cold or flu with lots of greens and the superpowers of ginger. 

This can be juiced or blended – whichever you prefer! 

What you'll need:

  • Thumb-sized piece of ginger
  • Handful of spinach
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 orange
  • 1 apple
  • 1 carrot

What you'll need to do:

Peel the ginger, lemon, orange and carrot. If blending, place all ingredients into the blender, add a little water and ice and blend until smooth. If juicing, simply put all of the fruit and veg through the juicer and if you want, add a little water to dilute.

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Colds, headcolds and flus are just the WORST.

From annoying sniffles and a niggle at the back of your throat to a fever and sweats; colds and flus can really bring us way down.

However, there are some things you can do to help avoid getting sick this autumn and boost that immunity to the max!

1. “I work out”
That’s right, exercise can help keep those pesky sniffles at bay – just another reason to get those runners on! Studies show that people who exercise on a regular basis get sick less often than those who do not.

2. “You can totally make friends with salad”
Don’t listen to them – fruit and veggies are one of your best bets against the common cold! Fresh produce will boost your immune system and keep sickness away. Garlic is also an amazing way to help boost your immune system against colds and flus because it is antiviral and anti-fungal – basically it’s magic. So eat it.

3. “Rub-a-dub-dub”
Keep some anti-viral gel in your bag or at your desk during cold and flu season. Sure, you may seem like a germ-phobe putting it on every time someone shakes your hand – but isn’t it better than the alternative?

4. “Zzzzz”
Make sure your sleep pattern is up to scratch as disturbances in our sleeping can really affect our health. Aim for 8-10 hours and you should be feeling fresh and perky.

5. “You’re not going out in that”
Now, we don’t want to sound like your parents but if you feel a cold coming on, going out with bare legs and wet hair isn’t going to help, is it?! Invest in a good winter coat and wrap up warm and cosy against the wind and rain. 

If all else fails and you do come down with a cold…or even a cursed flu then grab that water bottle, a big blanket, a day off, lots of fluids and some Disney movies and you'll be right as rain as soon as you know it!

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Fans of Miley Cyrus were turned away from her concert last night after it was cancelled only half an hour before it was due to begin.

Fans were told that the 21-year-old singer had come down with a bad case of the flu and was too sick to perform at the Bangerz tour concert in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Fans took to Twitter to vent their frustrations at the cancellation with one saying, “Talk about a group of mad girls…they go all the way 2 Charlotte & find out Miley Cyrus concert is cancelled. May be a riot 2nite lol.”

This is the latest blow for Miley, who is still grieving the death of her beloved dog Floyd.

While the pop star’s mum tried to distract her by buying her a new puppy, it didn’t seem to work.

The singer spent most of the weekend on Twitter sharing her grief over the death of her pet.

“I feel physically sick & I am so emotionally and physically exhausted I feel like I have nothing else to give sweet baby Moonie,” she said. “Maybe I’m not ready yet…. But being alone won’t bring him back to me….. I’m at a loss I don’t know what to do.”

 

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As the weather forces us indoors, colds, infections and flus spread more rapidly. Since it seems like there is never going to be a let up in this horrendous weather, it’s important that you do all you can to prevent yourself from getting sick.

Increase your intake of vitamin-rich foods
Fruit and vegetables are the best way to ensure a healthy immune system.

Get lots of sleep
The more tired you are, the higher your risk of catching an infection.

Wash your hands
Keep a hand sanitiser on your desk or in your bag and use it as often as you can.

Enjoy plenty of vitamin C rich foods
Vitamin C can help reduce the symptoms of colds and flu. Eat plenty of Brussels sprouts, broccoli, sweet potatoes and fruits.

Have a cup of tea
Tea contains a group of antioxidants called catechins which help the levels of inflammation in the body.

Stay hydrated
Fluids help remove toxins from the body so try to consume at least three litres a day.

Now, go do your good deed of the day and spread these tips around…

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