Do you ever feel like they’re a walking germ factory?!
And it seems to never fail that when they do get sick, it’s at the most inopportune times. Which for all the holidays coming up, can make for unhappy kids and stressed out parents.
But did you know that there are some super simple things you can do to help prevent and ward off those terrible colds and the flu?
Eastern medicine has some specific perspectives that, when paired with our recommendations, can make the difference between a household full of tears and disinfectant versus smiles and laughter.
Here are our top 3 ways to keep kids healthy during this cold and flu season and our 3 recommendations for if they do get sick:
3 WAYS TO STAY HEALTHY
We know that fresh air is good for kids (and good for parents when it’s getting a little rowdy in the house!), but it’s crucial that kids are covered appropriately for the weather.
Now yes, we understand that some kids don’t like wearing hats, scarves, gloves, and even jackets! But they aren’t the parent. YOU ARE.
Chinese medicine believes the back of the neck is the place where the elements such as wind, cold and heat can invade and cause colds and flu symptoms, making it important to protect kids' heads, ears, and necks with hats and hooded jackets.If you little ones comes in with teeth chattering and says they are cold, warm him or her up quickly with blankets or a warm bath.
Are whole foods a favorite in your household?
Kids’ diets are many times a reflection of parent’s diets, so if a household doesn’t eat many fruits and vegetables, kids are likely not to have a healthy immune system.
Eating whole foods, like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, lean meats, eggs, and whole grains – which are all packed with vital nutrients, encourages a healthy body.
Having a hard time getting kids to eat a variety of vegetables? Try having them eat according to a color wheel in which they receive a star for every vegetable eaten and eventually a reward.
And here are some fun ideas for kid vegetable recipes from The Lean Green Bean!
When it comes to prevention of cold and flus, Vitamin D is like your natural anti-viral and Probiotics are like your natural antibiotic. On top of those, Omega-3 fatty acids are what keeps the door closed to cold and flu invitations!
Vitamin D – What to Take
Winter time is when vitamin D levels drop and colds and flus increase. Vitamin D 3 (20 to 25 IU per pound of body weight) helps keep the immune system strong and helps fight of colds and flu.
For the months of September through May, I recommend liquid vitamin D drops that can be added to food or just placed on the tongue. If you call us, we can mail them out to you or you can get them on my online dispenary with a 10% discount. My favorite is Pure Encapulsuation liquid D3- 1 Drop a day for kids ages 1-6 and 2 Drops a day for kids ages 6 and above.
Probiotics – What’s the best?
When Probiotics are taking daily, research shows people get sick less often and less severe and not only that, Probiotics help with allergies and digestive health. What does that mean? They help produce a healthy immune system!
I recommend daily Probiotics (2-10 billion).
For ages 0-2 infant – Probiotics, hlc neonate is my favorite.
For ages 2 and above – I recommend Klaire Labs TherBiotic Plus. This is a powder which allows for precise dosing. I recommend an eighth of a teaspoon to start and increase to 1/4 teaspoon. Both are these are available on at my online dispensary for your convenience.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids – Recommendations
Omega-3 fatty acids (100-150mg of DHA a day) is good for Brain health, nervous system health and inflammation. The less inflammation in the body the better the immune system can fight off colds and flus.
Unless your family eats fish 2-3 times a week, then you are probably low on omega-3 fatty acids. I recommend Nordic Natural ProDHA strawberry – they are gel caps and kids can chew and swallow them or just chew them and spit out the cap. Not every kid may love them, but most do!
Overall Daily Vitamin – Should kids take one?
Children are growing rapidly at the same time nutrients in our food supply are declining. This means kids need plenty of vitamins and minerals for proper development. Find a multivitamin that your kids enjoy and is natural, such as Nordic Natural Nordic Berries.
These products, and everything else (including many physician lines not available directly to the public), are ALWAYS offered at a 10% discount. You simply need to set up an account, just like at Amazon, just click here.
3 WAYS TO TREAT COLDS & FLUS
1. Remember to Rest
Winter is the time of rest and restoration, so making sure kids get plenty of sleep and naps at the first sign of a cold/flu is important in preventing it from turning into an infection that may require antibiotics.
2. You Can Treat It Naturally
Yes, it’s probably inevitable that kids will get sick. However, it’s about how often and how severe when they do get sick that they aren’t prescribed antibiotics for every little sniffle.
With proper rest, targeted immune system supporting vitamins and nutrients, and loving care, they are highly likely to recover and continue developing a healthy immune system rather than one that relies on pharmaceutical drugs each time.
Natural treatment should start at the first sign of an illness – runny nose, fussiness, tiredness, a fever, and any additional signs of cold or flu.
Providing them healthy immune supplements that are geared to specifically boost the immune system through it’s formulas can be crucial during this time. I recommend herbal formulas such as herbal glycerinates from Gaia Kids Herbs – specifically Kids Sniffle Support or Kids Echinacea Supreme, and Chest Rub Relief from Now to be applied after a child falls asleep.
I also advice to eliminate mucous producing foods (i.e., all dairy products) and high sugar foods until the illness has run its course.
3. Look for the Root Cause if Frequent
If a child is frequently burdened with colds or flus, finding the underlying cause of his or her weakened immune system can make all the difference.
We find that sometimes hidden and/or delayed food allergies can cause a wide range of symptoms, including frequent colds and flu sicknesses. Researching and testing for any type of allergy can help give insight into a child’s immune system health.
If your child has a fever of over 102 degrees or has one for a prolonged period of time, is lethargic, has trouble breathing, and/or your intuition tells you something isn’t right, take your child to the doctor immediately. If your child is under the age of 1, be in communication with your child’s doctor from the start.
Want to learn more? These two books can serve as a wonderful foundation for natural prevention and healing for children’s illness:
An Encyclopedia of Natural Healing for Children and Infants by Mary Bove, ND
Homeopathic Medicine for Children and Infants by Dana Ullman
If your child is suffering from a cold or flu and you live in Castle Rock, Castle Pines, Centennial, Parker, Highlands Ranch, Monument, Larkspur, or Colorado Springs, contact our office at 303.688.6698 or schedule an appointment online and
let us help your child get his/her health back!