School started for us today. This means she will again be with her friends and the other 900+ students in her school. This means germs from a plethora of places and people.
I feel it is important to give her a strong start to her school year and boost her immunity and system for learning as well. Here are some of the things we do to help strengthen and support our family’s immunity when the school year starts – and most of the time.
- Breakfast IS important. What we feed our children, first thing in the morning, sets them up for optimum learning, or sets their bodies rolling on the blood sugar roller coaster.
- We make sure our days begin with a balanced meal. Since time is of the essence and my child prefers to “drag” herself into the kitchen at the last minute, we opt for a Meal Shake – her favorite is Bavarian Cocoa, it provides her with PLENTY of protein, some fiber, and some nutrients to give her the boost she needs.
- When she feels extra hungry, or I know she didn’t eat a full dinner the night before, we add a 1/4 cup of oatmeal in the morning to give her an extra boost
- Add Supplements if your child doesn’t eat 7-9 fruits & veggies a day, eat fish 2-3 times a day, or is a picky eater. The first couple of times she took her “grown up” supplements-it was a bit of a challenge, but when she swallowed them whole we celebrated! She is 7 years old and swallows tablets better than her daddy!
- Multi-vitamin – Coral takes two Incredivites (These multi-vitamins contain NOTHING ARTIFICIAL because it is important to me that when I am giving my daughter something to improve her health, that there not be ingredients with side effects that could harm her health.)
- Optiflora probiotic – this boosts her immune system in the large intestine – guaranteed live delivery of the bacteria she needs to maintain a strong immune system
- B-Complex & Omegaguard Fish Oil – She struggles with focus and the Omega & B-Complex really seem to help her with that.
- Osteomatrix Calcium/Magnesium supplement each day. This supplement assists her in relaxing AND prevents those pesky growing pains. If she complains of her joints or legs hurting, we add a Chewable Cal/Mag to the mix at dinner time too.
- Washing hands Frequently
- We know this one, we hear it all the time. Wash your hands frequently.
- Use PLAIN soap, NOT anti-bacterial soap. Our kids don’t typically wash their hands long enough to allow the antibacterial soaps to work properly – AND they kill the GOOD guys on the skin that help fight the bad guys. We’ve been so enamored with “KILLING GERMS” that we have killed off the good bacteria our bodies need to fight those germs!
- Reduce Sugar Intake
- I KNOW, they are kids, they love sweet, however – sugar suppresses our immune response. The more sugar and refined carbohydrates we consume, the harder it is for our body to fight off sickness. We don’t bring candy into our home – it just makes it easier. (not often anyway) Ever notice how cold and flu season begins in full force about 2 weeks AFTER Halloween? (interesting)
- Other options: FRUIT! Its sweet, it tastes good, its pretty, and its HEALTHY! We stock up on fresh fruits and frozen fruits, make frozen smoothees instead of popsicles and other sweet temptations.
- EAT A PROTEIN WITH EVERY CARB!
When we eat a sugar it spikes our blood sugar, which then causes a dramatic DROP in blood sugar –> This in turn can cause our children to crave and to become HANGRY MONSTERS! When we serve a protein with a carbohydrate – the protein works to level off that blood sugar and a more gradual drop – avoiding the monsters!
- Teach Your Children
- People frequently get a chuckle out of my daughter (for many things) specifically when she will come up to ask me, “What are my protein choices?” or “Mom, what snack options are available to me now?” She knows she needs to eat healthy to stay healthy. She KNOWS she must have a protein source if she is going to have a “sugar choice”. It makes my life easier when I know she is looking for the right foods.
- After School Snacks
- There are loads of blogs touting healthy options for after school snacks. Keep in mind the bullet above when you consider the snack options.
- 85 Snacks for Kids (and Adults)! from 100 Days of Real Food
- Healthy Snacks & Treats from 360 Your Life
- Healthy Snack Recipes from HealthyOates.com
- Healthy Snack Recipes from Healthy Grease Monkey
Protein bites, Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls, Dark Chocolate Brainy Bites (spinach brownies)
- 7-9 a Day! (Fruits and Vegetables) – I know, mine is picky too. She prefers fruit and broccoli and that is IT. We have instituted the you must try 2 bites theory – and the eat it all if you want desert, and it seems to work. (We’ve also implemented a time limit for her for desert as well.)
- Include fruits or veggies at every turn. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks.
- Taste the Rainbow of Flavors!
- When all else fails, HIDE IT in their favorite foods. I shred zucchini, carrots, spinach, moringa, and anything else I can think of to boost the nutritional value of her favorites.
- Exercise! We are blessed in Lee County FL because all of our schools now have 15 minutes of recess a day for our children to move and refresh and the minimum of 150 minutes per week of physical education! Movement is SO important in maintaining a healthy immune system as well as mental health… Get your kids moving! Park for 3o minutes, a sports team, a dance team, something… Keep them moving and off the couch.
The habits we model and teach our children today are shaping them into the adults of our future! Help our children help themselves by learning healthy, daily habits through Health Choices!
For more information on Healthy Choices or for a personal consultation or for questions on high quality supplements and other products, feel free to contact me, The Healthy Grease Monkey.
Make it a GREAT YEAR!