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Back to School? Choices that help keep your kids healthy

Wednesday August 28, 2019
Back to School? Choices that help keep your kids healthy

Whether starting school or in the final year at university, your kids and their health are a top priority. After all, if your kids are healthy, it’s less stress for you, too.

Food first. It’s no surprise that the core to good health, for adults and children, is a colourful and varied wholefood diet based upon a rainbow of fruit and vegetables, pulses, nuts and seeds and good quality oily fish, while limiting processed foods and sugar.

Choose organic where available to limit the consumption of pesticides and other toxins. Planning ahead with batch cooking not only saves time but can remove the temptation to eat lesser quality foods. Plus involving the kids in food preparation develops skills and interests in addition to improving their nutritional intake as they are more likely to eat a meal that they have contributed to.


IMMUNITY 
Growing children, especially those who don't eat a varied diet, may be at risk of inadequate dietary vitamin A and C. It's also difficult to get enough vitamin D through food alone.  That’s why the Department of Health recommends that all children aged six months to five years are given vitamin supplements containing vitamins A, C and D every day to support immune health and more.

Beneficial bacteria supplements have been well studied in children with emerging evidence to suggest they can support a healthy immune system; with the potential to reduce infectious illness, sick days, and medication-use such as those for colds and flu.

Always check with your GP or other health professional to get the correct diagnosis for any childhood ailment.  


SKIN HEALTH
Beneficial bacteria have been shown to reduce the severity of skin issues.  Specific strains of viable bacteria including Lactobacillus Rhamnosus GG have been indicated for both the prevention and treatment of skin issues in infants and children.  Look too for an organic fish oil supplement providing omega-3 essential fatty acids to help reduce inflammation.

Consider working with a nutritionist to seek the trigger of the skin issue.  They will devise a diet audit to exclude common triggers such as wheat and dairy to see if symptoms persist or subside.


BRAIN HEALTH
Cognitive development occurs at a rapid rate in children, where around 60% of the brain is formed of structural fat.  It is therefore critical to incorporate healthy fats in your child’s diet.  For fussy eaters, adding a high-quality fish or omega oil can promote cognitive health.  Specifically, DHA and EPA (Omega-3 fatty acids) are particularly important for brain health.


NUTRITION
Exposing your children to a wide array of colourful foods from an early age and having an ‘always try’ policy whereby everyone must try something before rejecting it.  Topping up with a good quality children’s multivitamin can reassure parents during the transition from fussy to foodie.


For more information, advice and support, visit your local independent health store:  www.findahealthstore.com

 

The information contained in this article is not intended to treat, diagnose or replace the advice of a health practitioner. Please consult a qualified health practitioner if you have a pre-existing health condition or are currently taking medication. Food supplements should not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet

 

TAGS: Children's Healthchildren's health, back to school

 

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