As states are beginning to reopen in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, there are certainly mixed emotions about returning to normal life. Many are ready to see our economy recover from the pandemic, but there are still apprehensions about the effect it will have on our health.
That’s why it is more important than ever to strengthen your immune system and focus on the aspects of your health that you can control. This is especially true for children as well!
Children are not naturally very germ-conscious, so it is important to do all that you can to boost their immune system to prepare them for returning to public settings.
The following are 7 ways you can boost your child’s immune system:
- Exposure to Sunlight
One of the greatest advantages of summertime is the sunshine! We absorb Vitamin D from the sun, which is vital for our immune system. Encourage your children to play outside, and make sure they are getting plenty of safe sun exposure!
- Healthy, Nutritious Diet
Probably the most important support for your child’s immune system is a healthy diet. Full of fruits, vegetables, lean meats, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates. We know it isn’t always easy to get kids to eat vegetables, so challenge yourself to get creative in how you incorporate them into their diet. Try throwing a handful of spinach in a smoothie, or blending up vegetables to hide in spaghetti sauce!
- Daily Multivitamin
A daily multivitamin is a great bonus for a healthy diet that boosts the immune system. There are a lot of great vitamin options available for kids, and kids tend to think they taste like fruit snacks! Vitamins are a great way to ensure they are receiving the proper nutrients daily, which is the foundation of a strong immune system.
- Sleep, Sleep, and More Sleep
Summertime is notorious for going off or normal routine and schedule, especially when it comes to sleep. A good night’s rest, however, is extremely important for maintaining a strong immune system. Lack of sleep weakens your child’s immune system and makes them vulnerable to illness. Encourage a normal sleep routine, and ensure that they are getting at least 8-10 hours per night, and a nap during the day if possible!
- Healthy Hygiene Habits
Kids and hygiene do not necessarily go hand-in-hand. They tend to stick everything in their mouths, they share toys with their friends, and they forget to wash their hands before eating. Which is exactly why it’s our job to teach them healthy hygiene habits. Keep it simple and make it fun too so they’re more likely to remember what you teach them! Proper handwashing goes a long way in boosting our immune system by greatly reducing the number of bacteria we are exposed to.
- Limit Sugar Intake
Research shows that sugar depresses the immune system and weakens our defenses against illness. The trouble is that processed sugar hides in almost everything! Make it a habit to read the ingredients listed on the labels on your food, and monitor how much sugar your child consumes each day. The American Heart Association recommends children consume less than 25 grams of sugar per day.
- Engage in Physical Activity
Physical activity is crucial for a healthy immune system, and it’s no different for children! They may not exercise as adults do, but they need to run around, to get their hearts pumping, and their lungs working. There are so many great resources available to get your kids moving. The options are limitless. And the bonus is that it will help them burn off the endless energy they seem to have!
There are many additional ways to boost your child’s immune system, but the 7 ways listed here are a great way to get started. To build the foundation for a strong immune system if you will!
At the Connection Point Early Learning Center, we want to do everything we can to ensure your kids are happy and healthy this school year! This is why we also emphasize the ways to boost their immune system as well as teach healthy hygiene habits.