Your child’s immune system is being bombarded with poor nutritional choices, increased sugar intake and decreased sleep from, Halloween until Christmas. Remember it’s not just the holiday season, it’s also the cold and flu season. With just a few minor adjustments you can arm your children for the assault.
The type and quantity of food your child consumes is very important for their overall health. Food provides energy for their bodies.
During this especially busy time of year parents aren’t as watchful of what their children are eating; and with organized sports and after-school activities taking up so much time, dinner is being skipped altogether or substituted with a quick trip through the drive-thru.
Most schools report increased absences as more children are suffering from colds and the flu because of weakened immunity. So, how do you fight back?
There are several vitamins and minerals that are a fundamental part of a strong immunity, including the following:
This is the most crucial time of the year to consider this important part of your child’s diet:
Sugar consumption has increased 30% in the last ten years.
Most children are consuming 50% of their calories from processed sugar. Sugar contains absolutely no nutrients and studies have proven that excessive sugar intake can deplete your body of several vitamins and minerals. A high intake of processed sugar adversely affects the immune system since it impairs the ability of white blood cells to sweep up and kill bacteria. It also robs the body of key nutrients such as Zinc; which we know is an important part of your child’s natural ability to fight off infections.
Throw in the holiday factor and the increased intake of sweets, and your child’s immune system is under attack during a vital time of year. With the weather growing noticeably colder, and the average child spending more time indoors, the lack of activity combined with an increased intake of processed sugars all adds up to a weakened immune system.
Having long been considered a restorative process that is a fundamental part of a healthy body, recent clinical studies have found sleep also to be a crucial part of a properly functioning immune system. Did you know that a sleep-deprived individual’s immune system includes patterns of alteration similar to those found in depressed and alcoholic patients? Yes, a lack of proper rest can potentially cause a child’s immune system to suffer the same changes as those caused by depression and alcoholism.
It may be that your child just won’t sleep this long, but, while this chart is certainly not a requirement, it is most definitely a healthy guideline. The most important thing to remember is that good rest is a prerequisite for a healthy immune system, so begin to establish a simple routine Sunday through Thursday that encourages your child to get their much-needed sleep.
Some suggested routines to introduce would be:
It boils down to this: you don’t want your child sick during the holidays anymore than your child wants to be sick. So teach your child healthy habits to avoid the spreading of germs.
Regular, bi-weekly chiropractic adjustments help the body maintain a strong immune response, regardless of the time of year, by keeping the nervous system functioning optimally. This works the same for adults as it does for children.
The nervous system controls and manages the function of all the systems in the body: respiratory, digestive, circulatory, hormonal, eliminative and the immune system. Any form of stress—physical, mental, or emotional—can impair health by causing nerve interference. The chiropractic adjustment restores nerve system function allowing the body’s ability to express a greater state of health and well-being.
Adjustments are modified to fit a child’s size, weight, and unique condition. Chiropractic adjustments are both gentle and specific to each child’s development.
Most parents report that their children enjoy their chiropractic adjustments and look forward to future adjustments. They also report that their children experience a greater level of health while under regular chiropractic care.
If you don’t currently have a pediatric chiropractor, you can schedule a consultation at First Step Family Wellness in St. Louis.