Our children are exposed to a multitude of bacteria and viruses on an everyday basis. No matter what precautions you take, it is inevitable.
Now with infections hovering over our heads like a sharp edged sword, we as mothers are instinctively looking for ways to boost our children’s immune system.
While maintaining hygiene, social distancing and staying indoors is the only way to keep this virus at bay, we can also take small steps to improve the immune system of our children which will benefit them not just today but in the long run as well.
Listed down below are small steps that will make a big impact help build immunity:
1) Serve more fruits and veggies
Every fruit or vegetable benefits our body in some way. We as mothers know the need for them, but getting our fussy little eaters to take to fruits and vegetables is not easy. The strategy I follow is to add a veggie twist to every food item my son likes to eat. Beet root dosa, veggie idlis, palak parathas, and pumpkin khichadi…the possibilities are endless. Don’t shy away from experimenting.
2) Reduced refined food
Generally all white foods like bread, maida, salt, sugar, suji, pasta, rice etc., would fall under this category. This is easier said than done, because with children it is difficult to avoid these ingredients. Then what is the way out? Being conservative, avoiding additional ingredients in the form or seasoning and being careful with items that include hidden sugar like ketchup, jam, biscuits, etc. is a strategy we’ve adopted.
Looking for alternatives works as well. For instance, using millets or wheat flour instead of maida, jaggery, dates or natural fruits instead of sugar is a great way to regulate intake of refined foods.
3) Make up for the additional needs
Having mentioned the above two points, children may still not meet their basic nutritional needs. This is either because they are picky eaters, their body needs more, or because avoiding junk completely is not an option sometimes with children!
That’s when I count on PediaSure to supplement the nutritional needs of my child. Adding PediaSure to his milk is a reassurance that his body has got what it needs. It has immunonutrients that help support immunity in kids. He also likes the taste, so I don’t have trouble in making him drink up. This makes my mom heart soar!
4) Get adequate sleep
It’s a known fact that sleep deprivation makes one more susceptible to illnesses. Children need adequate sleep to boost their immune system. Make sure they get minimum hours of sleep recommend by health experts if not more.
5) Physical activity
Engaging in regular physical activity is proven to have a positive impact on the immune system. This holds equally true in children. Indulging in outdoor play with children to give them the needed dose of Vitamin D and physical activity is a must.
But, since this is not possible as we are staying at home, you can indulge in other activities like hopping, dancing, playing, yoga, or structured exercise. We can encourage our children to do these when they are indoors.
Knowing your children and their habits best, you can add to these five points that I follow and create your own diet plan to boost their immunity.