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Winter Care

With so many bugs around in the winter months, it can be difficult to avoid getting sick.

This makes winter a tough time for blood supplies as many donors have to reschedule appointments due to colds and flu.

We hope these tips and recipes help you stay fighting fit and ready to save lives this winter.

Winter health tips

  1. Get the flu shot annually and as early as possible. It’s the most effective way to prevent flu and you can donate straight away afterwards (as long as you’re feeling well).
  2. Wash your hands often. Particularly before eating or handling food. When you can’t get to a tap and soap, use alcohol-based hand sanitisers.
  3. Avoid close contact with those already sick. Sometimes you can’t avoid it, but try if you can.
  4. Wash your hands before touching your eyes, nose or mouth. These are how the germs get from your hands into your body.
  5. Clean surfaces like door handles, phones and keyboards regularly.
  6. Look after yourself. The healthier you are, the less likely you are to get sick. Try to eat well, get enough sleep, exercise and drink plenty of fluids.

Feeling unwell? Reschedule your donation

If you do get sick, stay home to recover and avoid spreading it around.  Also, if you are sick and have a blood donation appointment, let us know as soon as you can so we can book someone else for that spot and reschedule your donation for when you’re well. This means that patients like Charlotte don't miss out on a life-saving donation.

Winter warmer recipes

Roast pumpkin soup

Pumpkin SoupIngredients

  • 1.5kg butternut pumpkin
  • Olive oil
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 stick of celery, chopped
  • 1 potato, chopped
  • 1 litre vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons chives, chopped
  • Black pepper
  • Sour cream


  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C. Peel pumpkin, remove seeds and cut roughly into wedges. Place on baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for about an hour, until soft.
  2. Meanwhile, heat some olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat and add onion, garlic, carrot, celery and potato and cook for approximately 10 minutes until soft.
  3. Add stock to saucepan and simmer with vegetables for about 10 minutes until reduced slightly.
  4. When pumpkin is ready, add to saucepan.
  5. Blend the soup until smooth. Add more stock if you prefer a thinner consistency. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Serve with some sour cream spooned on top and sprinkled with fresh snipped chives.


Hoisin lamb fillet with snake beans and chilli

Hoisin LambServes: 4
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes


  • 8 lamb fillets/tenderloins, trimmed
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 1 bunch snake beans, cut into 3cm lengths, cooked
  • 100g roasted peanuts
  • ¼ cup mint leaves
  • ¼ cup coriander leaves
  • rind and juice from a large lime
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped


  1. Brush the lamb fillets with oil and hoisin sauce.
  2. Preheat the barbecue or pan before adding the steaks.
  3. Cook the fillets on one side until the first signs of moisture appear. Turn once only using tongs.
  4. Judge the meat’s readiness by touch. Rare feels soft; medium is springy; and well done is very firm. Rest the meat for a few minutes before serving.

Serving suggestion

To serve, slice the lamb diagonally and toss with the snake beans,peanuts, mint and coriander leaves, lime rind, juice and chilli.


Green Vegetable and Noodle Stir-Fry

Hokkien stir-fryServes: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes


  • 1 bunch Broccolini baby broccoli, cut into 4cm lengths
  • 150g baby Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 1 green capsicum, cut into short thin strips
  • 1 red onion, cut into thin wedges
  • 2 celery sticks, diagonally sliced
  • 1 bunch Tuscan cabbage, cut into 4cm pieces
  • 400g hokkien noodles
  • ¼ cup oyster sauce
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup unsalted roasted cashews, roughly chopped (optional)


  1. Place noodles in a large heatproof bowl. Cover with boiling water. Set aside for 5 minutes. Drain well.
  2. Separate noodles with your fingers. Combine oyster sauce, soy sauce and honey in a small bowl.
  3. Heat oil in a large wok over high heat. Add the Broccolini baby broccoli, baby Brussels sprouts, capsicum, onion and celery. Stir-fry for 4 minutes.
  4. Add the Tuscan cabbage and water to the wok. Toss. Cover and cook for 2 minutes, tossing once, until cabbage just wilts.
  5. Add noodles and combined sauces. Toss until well combined and heated through.
  6. Divide stir-fry among serving bowls. Top with cashews and serve.

These are guidelines only and are not intended as medical or nutritional advice. If you have specific health or dietary concerns discuss them with your doctor.

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