Tips To Stay Healthy During Flu Season

‘Tis the season for coughs and sneezes… or is it? We don’t know about you, but here at Hilltop HQ we really don’t have time to be ill this winter- we’re super busy bees, after all! With this in mind, we thought we’d put together some tips on how to stay healthy during the flu season. Let us know in the comments or over on socials what your top tips are to keep the bugs at bay!

What is ‘flu season’?

Influenza (‘the flu’) is a common virus which can strike at any time of the year, but particularly in the winter. And it makes sense that this should be prime time for the flu- we all spend a lot more time indoors when it’s cold and miserable, in close proximity to others- making the spread of virus a lot easier in general. Cold, dry air also helps to strengthen the virus and weaken resistance too.

Did you know that the flu season actually starts in October, and can last until May? All the more reason to do what you can all year round to lower your risk of catching it!

Tips for staying healthy during flu season

While there’s no cure for the flu- and indeed there’s no way of knowing whether or nor you’re going to get it- there are somethings that you can do to lower your risk and keep yourself fit and healthy during the winter months. Here are our top tips:


As the saying goes, you cannot pour from an empty cup, and it’s true that you’ll be no good to anyone if you’re not taking care of yourself first. Self-care is a must!

If you feel like you’re coming down with something, take that as your sign to slow the pace a little. Prioritising sleep and maintaining a healthy diet can make all the difference- so if you know your regime could do with a little tweaking, do it now before the winter bugs get you!

Alongside eating well and getting enough sleep, try to focus on your emotional wellbeing too. Taking a holistic approach to health will help you fight off coughs and sniffles a lot more easily if you’re firing on all cylinders at once.

It can be difficult during the cold and dark winter months, but having things to look forward to helps a lot. November is a busy month for many, but there are events that take place that can be enjoyed too. Here at Hilltop, we love November for the promise of Christmas around the corner, and the fun of Children in Need events we can dip into too. Take a look at what’s happening in your area and see if you can get friends involved in some activities with you.

Acts of self-care can vary from person to person. For some, it might be a daily winner skincare regime (we recommend our Natural Beeswax Lip Balm to keep chapped lips at bay), or it could be  indulging in comfort food when you need it.Hilltop-Flu-Blog-23

Supplement your daily routine.

There’s no substitute for a healthy and balanced diet- so when we say supplement, we mean real, honest food. There are certain super foods that will equip you with the armour you need to get through the winter months, including:

Manuka honey: Naturally, Manuka honey makes the top of our list, and for really good reasons too. Ancient literature has long been praising Manuka honey for it’s powerful anti-microbial properties, making it a pretty valuable tool when it comes to combatting coughs and colds. In fact, research shows that Manuka honey is able to ‘hinder the growth of microbes’, with experts agreeing that they’re yet to meet a bacteria which is able to stand up to its super powers!

How can you incorporate Manuka into your daily routine? According to guidance published by Public Health England and the National Institute for Clinical Excellence, honey can be the first line of treatment for coughs- Bee-rilliant! Just one spoonful is enough to boost natural protection against bacteria- whether that’s in your tea of a morning of just a straight up spoon by itself!

Lemons and Limes: the perfect partner with honey during the winter- add it to your tea for an instant pick-me-up. Hot honey and lemon is a great way to soothe sore throats and coughs- try our recipe here, which uses ginger for an extra boost!

Turmeric: known for it’s ability to help ease respiratory problems, turmeric compliments honey beautifully, so much so we made it the star of our Manuka & Turmeric Spiced Latte Drink! This one is a great secret weapon against flu this winter, and delicious too!

Apples: they say an apple a day keeps the doctor away, and there’s actually a lot of truth to that! Apples are great for gut health thanks to the polyphenols they contain, and that makes them wonderful for your gut microbiome. A healthy gut equals a stronger immune system, so it just makes sense to eat seasonal apples as often as you can. Try our delicious Apple & Peach Puff Pastries for a tasty twist on breakfast this winter.Hilltop-Flu-Blog-23

Stay warm & active!

When you’re cold, your body is less able to fight a virus if you come into contact with it, so staying warm and keeping active is essential. We get it though, winter training can be hard, and motivation can take a dip- but trust us, it’s worth it!

Bring your friends into the action. Maybe you need a walking buddy or a gym partner. Or perhaps a group of you could get together to raise money for Children in Need? Events like this are a great way motivator- and you’ll be raising money for charity too, which will help to boost endorphins (the happy chemicals) so it’s a win-win all round!

And if you’re looking for a quick snack that will boost your energy, we’ve got you. So many of you tell us our Honey & Peanut Butter Fudge is your go-to when you need a little pick-me-up. Delicious, easy to make and so much better for you than shop-bought fudge!


A final word on how can honey help during flu season.

Confused about which Manuka Honey to go for, or wondering how you can tell it’s the real deal or not? Here at Hilltop, we’re passionate about raising awareness of the benefits of Manuka, and we’re always more than happy to share our knowledge with you!

As a guide, the higher the methylglyoxal (MGO) in your honey, the stronger the benefits to your immune system. Look for the numbers on our jars to get your perfect Manuka fix!

We recommend:

50+ MGO for a daily boost. Indulge in a daily spoonful and enjoy a golden glow all year round.

100+ MGO for a more robust elevation. Perfect for those times when you need a little extra boost, some more spring in your step.

500+ MGO for a nourishing pot of sweet joy! The ideal antidote to stresses and strains, the high MGO content will leave you buzzing and ready for anything.

You should also look for certification of authenticity too. Here at Hilltop, were proud to bring you 100% genuine New Zealand Manuka, harvested by experts… and certified delicious! You can see our authenticity logo on our jars- and do reach out with questions too, we’re always happy to help!