off Kiss

SundayXtra - - TRENDS - BY MARK IYPE

IF there weren’t rea­son al­ready, Cana­dian health ex­perts are warn­ing mommy shouldn’t be kiss­ing Santa Claus un­der­neath the mistle­toe this year.

Not un­less she wants to risk dis­ap­point­ing bil­lions of chil­dren around the world by giv­ing Santa the flu.

And kiss­ing is just one of a num­ber of nonos Ry­er­son Uni­ver­sity’s School of Oc­cu­pa­tional and Pub­lic Health warns is a sure­fire way to get sick as the flu and the hol­i­day sea­sons con­verge.

To fight the flu, the uni­ver­sity sug­gests the air kiss, that sta­ple of high so­ci­ety, where germs won’t get passed through lip-to-skin con­tact.

While it might seem crazy to avoid kiss­ing your loved ones, the flu is trans­mit­ted first and fore­most through saliva, and smack­ing lips is one of the best ways to give your friends and fam­ily the gift that will keep them sneez­ing, the uni­ver­sity warns.

And if you plan on at­tend­ing a re­li­gious ser­vice this year, the uni­ver­sity says the health-in­spired el­bow bump­might be the best way to say hello to your fel­low wor­ship­pers.

While a greet­ing that looks fit for the foot­ball field might not fly with some, it helps to re­duce con­tact be­tween peo­ple and keeps the flu at bay.

The school’s list is also pep­pered with com­mon flu-pre­ven­tion tech­niques, such as fre­quent hand­wash­ing and cough­ing into your sleeve.

So, at a time when peo­ple are head­ing to hol­i­day par­ties and wan­der­ing through crowded shop­ping malls search­ing for the per­fect gift, the health ex­perts are re­mind­ing us an ill­ness is the last thing peo­ple want for Christ­mas.


Kiss­ing Santa Claus — and ev­ery­one else, for that mat­ter — can spread the flu faster than a team of fly­ing rein­deer, health ex­perts warn.

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