How to protect your child from colds and flu naturally
Top 5 tips to naturally boost your child's immune system and prevent illness this cold and flu season
Many parents tell us that their children seem to be permanently on antibiotics as they catch one infection after the other! With the cold and flu season approaching, we urge parents to keep one thing in mind: prevention is better than cure! Because the immune systems of children are still developing, it's pretty easy for them to catch a cold or flu. Additionally, the likelihood of your child catching a bug is greatly increased if they're in a creche or school. Dealing with a sick child can be very difficult for parents, and if your child's immune system is not boosted or working at its optimal level, the extent to which they suffer from the infection is amplified. Repeated antibiotic treatment can also weaken a child’s immune system and make it more difficult for them to recover on their own.
The best thing any parent can do with the cold and flu season approaching is to ensure that their child's immune system is prepared for potential viral or bacterial attacks! Supporting and promoting your child's immune system is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child, as the state of their immune system (as a child) determines the quality of their health going into adulthood. It's important to remember that even if your child has a strong immune system, they may still catch a cold or flu! Colds and flu serve a natural purpose in strengthening, developing and training their immune systems. However, if your child's immune system is optimally-functioning, they'll recover much more quickly than if they have a compromised or weakened immune system.
Here are our top 5 tips to naturally boost your child's immune system, and prevent them from catching a cold or flu!
Providing your children with a well-balanced and healthy diet can be challenging. Family schedules can be overwhelming at times, making it easy to buy 'convenient' foods, which are usually not the most nutritional. Diet and nutrition play a huge role in your child's health; this is where the saying "you are what you eat" stems from! Make your best effort to ensure that your child receives a healthy diet and watch them become healthier and happier!
Here are various ways to improve your child's diet:
- Encourage them to ditch the mentality that healthy food is not yummy
- Incorporate fresh fruits and vegetables into every meal (even if it's a small portion)
- An increasing number of health-conscious snacks are coming onto the market - let your child pick out their own selection
- Serve lean meats and plant-based protein sources
- Choose wholegrain breads and cereals
- Limit sugary drinks, including soda, fruit juice, milkshake etc.
- Replace sugary drinks with healthy, delicious smoothies, using these wonderful organic Superfood ingredients
- Instead of frying, try steaming, boiling, baking or roasting food
- A daily vitamin supplement for children is an excellent way to ensure that
they receive all the important nutrients they need – especially for fussy kids!
Regular exercise comes with a long list of health and mental benefits! People who live an active lifestyle generally experience less health issues than those who live a sedentary lifestyle. While adults are likely to exercise at the gym, healthy exercise for children is playing in parks, riding their bicycles, running around the garden, going swimming, playing sport or doing dance classes. Not only will they have fun doing these activities, their health and immune system will reap benefits!
Here's how exercise boosts the immune system:
- Improves circulation, thus improving transportation of nutrients all around the body - cells that are properly nourished are stronger
- Your body temperature increases when exercising, which helps fight off any infections in the same way a fever would
- Exercise lowers stress levels; stress produces inflammation in the body and lowers the immune system, which leaves one prone to catching a cold or flu
- Lymph plays an important role in a healthy immune system. The lymphatic
system does not have an automatic ‘pump’ like the circulation system does (the heart). Exercise helps to pump lymph around the body.
As we all know, children grow at an alarming rate! Not only that, but children also seem to have limitless energy! Their growing bodies need optimum nutrition to make sure that they grow up big and strong and that their immune systems develop to protect them against illness. Brains also need nourishment to cope with school work. Solgar Kangavites Multivitamin Supplement for Children contains all of the vitamins and minerals a child needs for growth, strong immune systems and healthy brain functioning in a yummy chewable tablet! Dairy-free, gluten-free, wheat-free, preservative-free, sugar-free and NO artificial ingredients.
Studies say that getting enough sleep is linked to a healthy immune system. Researchers found that a good night's sleep can boost the effectiveness of your T-cells, which are specialized immune cells! It is extremely important that your child is getting enough sleep according to their age! If your child suffers from conditions that inhibit a healthy sleeping pattern (such as insomnia, nightmares, behavioural issues before bed time, emotional upsets), finding out the underlying reason and then fixing it is essential in establishing a healthy sleeping routine.
- DuDu Drops is a gentle and non-addictive homeopathic remedy to help children sleep naturally. Suitable for children between the ages of 12 months and 12 years old.
- For babies under 12 months, see our Sleepy Sprinkles. Assists with sleep problems caused by teething and colic, helps babies feel relaxed and secure, and helps establish healthy, regular sleeping patterns!
- Use Serenite Plus Drops for teenagers and adults. It's a safe natural remedy for insomnia, anxiety and intermittent sleep, without risk of addiction!
We found one of the best explanations on the importance of children getting sufficient sleep on www.verywellfamily.com:
"Since school-aged children need between 9 to 12 hours of sleep, parents must be vigilant about enforcing bedtimes, setting up good sleep routines, and watching for signs of fatigue in their children. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine, or AASM, recommends the following sleep guidelines for children and adults:
Infants 4 to 12 months old: 12 to 16 hours (including naps)
Kids ages 1 to 2: 11 to 14 hours (including naps)
Kids ages 3 to 5: 10 to 13 hours (including naps)
Kids ages 6 to 12: 9 to 12 hours
Kids ages 13 to 18: 8 to 10 hours
It’s especially important for school-aged kids to get enough rest. For one thing, one of the factors that can reduce the immune system’s ability to fight off infections is not getting enough sleep, and as we know, kids in school are constantly exposed to contagious illnesses such as colds from classmates. Lack of sleep in children has also been associated with health problems ranging from obesity to mood swings, as well as cognitive problems that can have an impact on a child’s ability to concentrate, pay attention, and learn in school. If your child fights to go to bed and has trouble going to sleep, take steps to figure out what the problem may be and make sure she gets the rest she needs."
Many children are prescribed antibiotics and other pharmaceutical drugs. These drugs often contain dangerous chemicals and preservatives, and negatively impact immune systems. Natural remedies made from plants have been proven effective in boosting immune systems and fighting infection, without the negative side effects that come with pharmaceuticals. In fact, immune boosting plants are said to be more effective than flu vaccinations, as the strains of flu are constantly mutating!
Here is our top selection of immune-boosting natural remedies for children:
- BaniFlu: This homeopathic oral ‘flu vaccine can be used by the whole family, including children and babies, to help protect against the ‘flu without the negative effects of conventional ‘flu vaccines.
- KiddieBoost: Naturally strengthens immune functioning in children and promotes your child's natural resistance to illness. This antiviral and antibiotic alternative speeds up recovery from illness, while helping to break the 'antibiotic cycle' and repeated re-infection. Suitable for little ones over the age of 12 months.
- Sniffly Sprinkles: Sniffly Sprinkles contains a selection of all-natural 100% homeopathic ingredients to quickly, safely and effectively relieve sneezing, runny and blocked noses in babies and children. It can be used for newborns and children up to the age of 12. Sniffly Sprinkles is also a wonderful remedy for settling kids who are miserable and restless due to illness.
- Throat and Tonsil Dr: Natural relief for fever, sore throats and tonsillitis. Reduces the need for antibiotic use and prevents secondary infection like 'strep throat'. Suitable for all ages and during pregnancy!
- Congesto-K Kiddie Rub: Natural aromatherapy chest rub, safe and effective for children and babies from the age of 6 months. Safely and gently relieves congestion of the nose and throat, while soothing sick children and boosting their immune system!
- AllisOne Immuno Synergy is a wonderful lactose-free tissue salt formulation that can be used to strengthen immune systems. It can be used by the whole family.
- Immune Support Tea: For children who like tea, try Yogi Tea’s Organic Immune Support – also great for the whole family!
If you have any questions relating to your child's health, please contact our team for FREE advice, or leave a comment below. We always love hearing from you!