Did you know the average child will experience 6-8 viruses per year? Yikes!
For us parents, that means a lot of time will be spent on blowing noses, checking temperatures, and worrying about every little sneeze - you know how it goes.
Flu and other illnesses during the cold season are unavoidable, and you will eventually have a sick child on your hands. Literally.
Fortunately, there are a few ways you can boost your kid’s health for the winter. Check out these simple tips to keep your their bodies running at full throttle and reduce the chances of a virus taking hold:
Cut the sugar
Eating sugar can actually suppress the immune system for hours at a time! This can eventually open us up to bad bacterial growth and viruses. Just take a moment to think about how many times our kids eat sugar. Sugar hides in almost every single meal we eat. It is everywhere, including in your kid's food. Most “healthy” children’s breakfast cereals, juices and yogurts are FULL OF SUGAR. Even your basic pasta sauce has sugar added to it! Please make sure you read the label and avoid the sugar as much as you can.
Keep the family fitness going
When the cold comes around, the temperature drops low and so does your child’s amount of playtime. Time to get creative! Find indoor playgrounds or fun winter activities you can do as a family, like ice skating. Fitness is important for kids not only to maintain a healthy weight but to strengthens hand-eye coordination in the brain. Regular exercise also builds core muscles and allows kids to burn off energy so they are not restless at night. A major win for every parent!
Add some probiotics
About 80% of your child’s immune system is located in the gut, and gut bacteria can make a world of difference in your child’s health. Adding in good bacteria will help crowd out the harmful bacteria, which will reduce allergies, help food to digest and assist your child’s body in responding to new viruses. There are several natural probiotic foods you can give your kid, or you can use a probiotic supplement instead.
Put them to sleep on time
This is a major health benefit that is often overlooked by most parents, mainly because following a consistent sleep schedule for your child can be very tough. Sometimes they just won’t go to sleep! But studies have shown that kids who get eight hours of sleep per night or more have fewer viruses throughout the year, in addition to many other benefits. This is because sleep deprivation suppresses the immune system and children need more sleep than adults. Try to set a regular bedtime and don’t slack. Your kid’s health depends on it!
Watch your words and your actions!
The power of words gets so overlooked as being a kid’s health benefit. The words you choose to use with your child make a huge impact on their health, both mentally and physically. Explain to your kids why good food is important and why you feed them the way you do. Show them how exercise can make them big and strong by doing it with them. Teach them to be thankful and look for the positive in life, within themselves and in others. Your thoughts eventually filter down to your actions, and kids are always watching. So let’s help our children to think healthy and be healthy by choosing our words and actions wisely.
Good luck Mom and Dad!
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