Yes, we said elbows. While regular hand washing is one of the top tips to avoid getting sick in cold and flu season, scrubbing all the way up to your elbows could be even more effective, says Stacy Mobley N.M.D. The gross truth: “Studies suggest that the forearm holds more bacteria than your armpit,” explains Mobley. In fact, the top places on the body for bacteria to thrive are the forearms, palms, index fingers, back of knee and the soles of feet, according to researchers at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Mobley recommends washing your hands and forearms regularly with soap, especially before eating or touching your face, and lathering up for the full length of the “Happy Birthday” song to wash off all cold and flu causing germs.