We know you love your children a lot and would not like to see them fall sick. All the germs around us, food that your children share at school, the rising pollution and the meals that children skip actually pose a risk for the health of every child. The risk actually goes higher in the winter season when our immune system becomes weaker. You may think that you can keep your child in good shape by providing him a balanced diet. No doubt nutrition is important for the immune system of the body, but it is not sufficient. You will have to take many other measures in order to keep your child healthy and protect him from getting sick during the winter when your child is more vulnerable. Here are a few things that you can do:
1. Limit refined sugar intake: Medical studies have shown that consuming high amounts of refined sugar in the diet can reduce the immune system’s ability by up to 50%, hence reducing the ability of the body to fight germs and bacteria. The drop in immune system’s ability can last up to 4 to 5 hours after digestion. Children love candies, but you have to make sure that you limit candies, especially during the winter. You will have to learn to refuse.
2. Consume more healthy fats: We consume less water during the summer and just like air looses moisture, so does our body. You would notice that during the winters your lips chap and skin dries. The digestive system of the body also gets dry. As a result of excessive moisture loss, our body starts producing more mucus which makes the body prone to flu and cold. You can reduce this dehydration by giving your child more healthy fats in the diet which include Omega 3s, found in rich amount in walnut, salmon and flax seeds. Keep a bowl of pistachios, raw nuts and pumpkin seeds on your dinner table. So that your child can boost his health while snacking.
3. Garlic, ginger and onion in everything: These food items can be added to almost anything that you cook. Not only would they add a rich taste to your food, but would also keep your child in good health as they are known to be excellent immunity boosters.
4. Drink water: A dehydrated body can easily catch cold, hence it is very important to keep your child’s body well hydrated during winters. We naturally consume less water in winters. Make your child drink at least 2-3 litres of water during the day. Send your child with a water bottle to the school, offer him water after every meal and keep a bottle of water at his bedside. Your child would drink more water when a bottle is within his reach.
5. Dairy requires caution: High level of proteins in cow’s milk can result in high levels of mucus for some children. Mucus is important for our air passages, but in many cases the excess of mucus can result in flu and cold.