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    Housecall: Want to skip the flu this year?

a young man and woman sick with colds or the flu, with red noses and tissues in hand, sneezing

Flu shot: Your best bet for avoiding influenza 
Flu season is nearly here, so it's a good time to get vaccinated. This year's annual flu shot will offer protection against three or four of the influenza viruses expected to be in circulation this flu season. A high-dose flu vaccine also will be available for adults 65 and older. Getting a flu shot often protects you from coming down with the flu. And although the flu shot doesn't always provide total protection, it's worth getting. Even when the vaccine doesn't completely prevent the flu, it may lessen the severity of your illness and the risk of serious complications. Here are the answers to some common questions about flu shots.

Treating psoriasis
Psoriasis is a common, chronic skin condition that causes scales and red patches that are itchy and sometimes painful. Treatment may reduce inflammation and clear the skin. There are three main types of treatment for psoriasis: topical treatments, light therapy and systemic medications. Lifestyle measures, such as moisturizing, quitting smoking and managing stress, may help, as well. Learn more about the treatment options for psoriasis.

When is laser surgery a good idea for cataracts?
If you're thinking about having cataract surgery, your health care provider may opt for a laser-assisted approach. In certain situations, either traditional or laser-assisted surgery may be the safer, preferred option. Learn more from Dr. Jay Erie, a Mayo Clinic ophthalmologist.

Is it OK to eat moldy cheese?
Some types of mold are used to make cheeses, such as Brie and Camembert, and these molds are safe for healthy adults to eat. Other instances of moldy cheese may or may not be safe. Learn more from Katherine Zeratsky, a Mayo Clinic registered dietitian nutritionist.

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Inflammatory bowel disease
Video: 'Mayo Clinic Diet'

Quick bean and tuna salad
Sloppy Joes
Tomato-basil sandwich
Chicken sliders

Vitamin C: An essential nutrient
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that supports normal growth and development, and helps your body absorb iron. Because your body doesn't produce or store vitamin C, it's important to include vitamin C in your diet. For most people, an orange or a cup of strawberries, chopped red pepper, or broccoli provides enough vitamin C for the day.

Need practical advice on diet and exercise? Want creative solutions for stress and other lifestyle issues? Discover more healthy lifestyle topics at mayoclinic.org.

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