7 Simple Steps to Dodge the Flu This Winter

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This year's flu shot may be a dud... It's now only 23 percent effective, according to a new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The flu shot works best when you get it early on in the season — that way, your body has the two weeks it needs to build immunity when the virus still circulates throughout the population at a low level, Dr. Susan Rehm, medical director of The National Foundation for Infectious Diseases, told weather.com in December. But it is available all the way through April, typically, when the season winds down. “Why weather flu when there are preventions and treatments available?” Dr. Rehm said.

Infectious disease docs say the vaccine is the single-best way to protect yourself from influenza, though of course, it is not 100-percent effective and won't shield you against the common cold (rhinovirus) and other infections.

But even without a shot, there are still things you can do to stay healthy. Weather.com offers these 7 simples steps to dodge the flu.

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