With winter comes the imminent onslaught of bugs and runny nose, and it feels like it’s almost impossible to avoid. With small kids in the house, it’s a constant struggle of taking sick leave from work to stay with them at home and taking turns with who gets sick next.
The good news is – it doesn’t have to be that way. Sure, you kids get exposed to germs in school or on their commute, but you can take steps and measures to ensure you give them the best chance to fight off anything that comes their way, and it all starts with boosting their natural immunity.
The best way to keep bugs at bay is to take care of prevention first. And good immunity always starts with taking care of your gut – that means healthy fresh food!
In this article, we thought we would look into 5 easy ways to boost your kid’s immunity this winter and help them thrive no matter what life throws at them.
As it’s the case with any topics related to health, please consult your medical practitioner if you experience any health issues as this article is not aimed to substitute a professional medical opinion.
1. Exercise and Spend Time Outdoors
Moving your body is one of the best things you can do for your health and it’s especially true for kids. If they spend the majority of their day sitting in the classroom, and then the rest of the day at home in front of a TV or a computer, chances are that they are not on a pathway to great health outcomes.
Kids need to be active and engaged, preferably outdoors. Even if the weather isn’t exactly pleasant, dressing them warmly and getting them outside teaches them valuable lessons and gets their bodies into movement.
Physical activity has been shown to improve a number of vital body functions and ensuring that your kids lead a healthy lifestyle will set them up for healthy habits in the future. Lead by example and join them!
2. Feed Them Fresh Home Made Food
Let food be your medicine as the Greek physician Hippocrates says, and it rings true especially today. Many modern diseases are linked to the food choices we make on a daily basis and unknowingly sabotage our own health.
When it comes to kids, it’s especially important to ensure they eat a varied diet consisting of fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole foods – that means eliminating sugar, oil, and heavily processed foods.
Once you set your kids on the path of eating mostly processed, sugar and fat-loaded meals, it’s an uphill climb to get them to adopt healthy eating habits, but it’s so worth it in the end.
Make food fun again and get them excited about eating healthy by inviting them to join you in cooking and trying new recipes. Kids love being involved in everything you do and it gives you a chance to educate them about the food choices we make and how they impact our health.
If you’re using supplements, consider upgrading your collection of vitamins to an immune booster – they come in versions for both adults and kids and can be tailored exactly to your needs.
Most should be consumed with food to ensure that they get absorbed easily.
4. Lots of Water
Water is as important as the air we breathe and sometimes even we don’t recognize the symptoms of dehydration, which include sunken eyes and cheeks, irritability, dry mouth or tongue, or in the case of kids it could mean a dry diaper despite wearing it for hours.
Keep an eye on the water intake and get your kids bottles that clearly measure how much they’ve been drinking.
Sit them somewhere visible where they can reach them easily while they play. If they’re not good at drinking on their own, set a reminder on your phone or get an app that will prompt them to drink regularly.
Stick to clean water without flavor, just as nature intended.
5. Good Sleep
Sleep has to be one of the most underrated health triggers ever known. Studies show that the quality and length of sleep have massive health consequences over an extended period of time, and it’s ever so important that kids adopt healthy sleeping habits early in life.
Sleep deprivation can cause a host of physical symptoms, one of which includes lower immune function.
Ensure that your kids don’t have any gadgets in their bedroom and don’t start on any type of screen at least an hour before bed. Enforce a strict bedtime routine and wake-up time.
If you have other tips for boosting your kid’s immunity, we’re keen to hear all about them in the comments section.