It’s much easier to prevent illness rather than spend time on visits to the doctor’s office. While many children do not need much more than whole foods, play, and love to be healthy year-round, some children are prone to colds, sore throats, strep, coughs, ear infection, and the flu. Thus, making their fall and winter rougher than it should be. This can lead to missed days of school and work, sporting events, and holidays. It is stressful for a parent when a child does not feel well.
Over the counter and prescription medications for young children often have adverse effects and risks associated with them. Supporting the immune system allows for safe, gentle options for preventing illnesses, so we do not have to reach for other medications unless necessary.
Immune boosting does not happen overnight. This is why it is important to start immune boosting now and continue throughout cold and flu season (fall into early spring) to prevent illness and keep your child healthy all year. The following tips have scientific evidence behind them and are safe.
- Dietary changes:
- Eliminate most sugar, all soda and fruit juices.
- Limit dairy products (milk, cheese, yogurt), especially if they make your child congested and mucousy.
- Increase green leafy veggies such as spinach, broccoli, cauliflower and fresh or frozen berries such as strawberries and blueberries.
- Encourage adequate amounts of quality proteins (beans, lean meats, poultry, fish) and high-quality fats (olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, nuts) at each meal.
- Zinc is an immune-boosting mineral. It’s found in lamb, oysters, beef, pumpkin seeds, cashews, and beans. Zinc can reduce viral infections such as colds, absences from school, and antibiotic use.
- Vitamin C also known as ascorbic acid is found in citrus fruits, berries, potatoes and peppers. Vitamin C is vital for the maintenance of the body’s overall health and is seen in high concentration in immune cells. Studies have shown a 13% decrease in cold symptoms in children who took Vitamin C daily for prevention.
- Give a daily probiotic. Probiotics, especially lactobacillus with bifidobacter, taken during the winter months has been shown to reduce the number of colds, fever, cough and the use of antibiotics. Powder form is best for younger children as the powder can easily be hidden in a smoothie or applesauce.
- Vitamin D3 not only supports the immune system but is also important for bone building and brain development in children. The sun is a major source of vitamin D. We tend to get much less sunshine in the winter due to cooler weather and being indoors. Adequate Vitamin D supplementation is essential for developing and maintaining a healthy immune system.
Prevention is a key component of what we do here at Kare Health & Wellness. Through supplementation, education, and empowerment we can give you the tools and the knowledge to set your child up for success. By understanding the needs of your child, we are able to provide products and services that complete the care and family medicine your child needs.
Stop by our office and check out our kid-friendly supplements and ask about scheduling an Integrative Pediatric Consultation today. Let Kare Health & Wellness help boost your children’s immune systems and provide holistic family medicine in Springfield Missouri.