Wouldn’t you like your kids to be better than average? According to Utah Health, on average, school-aged kids catch anywhere from five to eight colds a year. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to better the odds, and improve the health of your entire family! Here are our top nine tips:
1. Plenty of Sleep
School-aged children need nine to twelve hours of sleep each night. Help your child experience sound sleep by avoiding caffeine, reducing screen time before bed, and establishing fun and relaxing night-time routines. And tuck them into bed for an added sense of snuggly security.
2. Plenty of Healthy Foods
Healthy eating habits provide the strength and energy needed for daily physical, mental, and emotional success. Start your kiddos with true boost: a delicious and nourishing breakfast. Pack heart-healthy and wholesome lunches to keep your kids from that midday crash, and greet your students with a yummy snack at the end of their day. A nutritious dinner finishes the day well, and shared family meals are proven to be beneficial. When planning meals, focus on high protein, low sugar, and low to moderate fat foods. Check out a few of our favorites, and stop back soon for these and other recipes!
- Nut Butter, Banana & Berry Wrap
- Lemon Blueberry Overnight Oats
- Charcuterie Junior: Cubed turkey breast, sliced cheese, crackers, broccoli florets, apple slices, peanut butter
- Greek Yogurt Parfait
- Half a Sandwich: hummus & cucumber
- Cottage cheese & carrot sticks
- Homemade Cereal Bars
- Whole-grain spaghetti with meat sauce,veggies & parmesan cheese
- One Pan Chicken Fajitas
- Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Pepper
3. Plenty of Exercise
Growing children need around 60 minutes of physical activity every day, and great options abound! Youth sports programs across the country provide opportunities to get your kiddos moving and shaking, and may lead to a lifetime love of exercise. Afterschool programs offer curated activities for your students. Yards — yours, your neighbor’s, or neighborhood parks — provide space for kids to run and play and soak up some extra vitamin D. Maybe, today there’s some extra time to set up an indoor obstacle course, with pillow leapfrog and couch cushion fort crawling. Start being creative and watch your kiddos join in!
4. Plenty of Sound Hygiene Habits
Have you taught your kids how to cover a sneeze? Or what should they do if someone sneezes or coughs near them? Keep your children safe from germs when you're not around by teaching them to follow these habits:
- Brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day
- Clean your hands after touching a shared toy at school
- Clean your hands after using the restroom
- Avoid touching your face and eyes
- Pack a hand sanitizer in their backpack and lunchbox for convenient hand cleaning
5. Plenty of Hydration
Making sure your little ones have enough water is so important for keeping their minds and bodies moving. Grab them a cool water bottle they can bring to fill up at school and be sure to start and end the day with hydration. Find special stickers to adorn their hydration vessel for the days they hydrate well! Straw lids are a bonus - they’re fun for every age. Insulated cups are great for keeping liquids cold. If you decide to go with plastic, be sure to recycle responsibly!
6. Plenty of an Immunity Boost with Elderberry!
Don’t wait for your child to get sick to give them Elderberry, start now and prepare them for the germs to come! Regular doses of elderberry can help boost your child’s natural immunity and expedite healing processes. Each delicious dose of our Elderkids gummies is crafted with 97.5mg of scientifically-proven elderberry and essential nutrients like zinc, vitamin C, and probiotics. These promote a balanced digestive system, and a robust immune response when sickness tries to butt in. We have elderberries in a liquid form for kids called Children’s Formula. This formula gives your kiddos the same amazing benefits as the gummies, but with all the nutritional value of the added blueberries. LIFE HACK: Drip a teaspoon into your kids’ juice, stir into their yogurt, or drizzle on top of some fruit… who said it had to be hard?
7. Plenty of Opportunities to Manage Stress
When you recognize the symptoms of stress such as anxiety, mood swings, restlessness, and irritability, take a second and pay closer attention. Helping your kiddos cope with anxiety is a different way to help them bounce back. Hear them out, ask them what’s wrong, and listen, actively and calmly, to what they communicate to you, in both words and body language. They will learn to identify stress, process their feelings, and determine their response when you comment briefly on their shared feelings. We all desire to be heard, understood, and valued. If the stressor can be removed, talk through a solution with them! They may be surprised at how much they know! And after all of the talking, help them find an activity for a break. Check out a few of our recommendations below:
- Spend time in nature or at a nearby park
- Play their favorite game
- Read their favorite book
- Teach them to journal about how they feel - Pick out a nice journal with them
- Draw or paint a picture together
8. Plenty of Information on Vaccinations
According to the CDC “Vaccines reduce your child’s risk of infection by working with the body’s natural defenses to help safely develop protection against disease” (CDC). Vaccines can help prevent serious diseases that at one time harmed young kids. They are extensively tested to ensure their effectiveness and safety. Check out the CDC website for plenty of information on vaccinations at CDC.gov.
9. Plenty of Awareness for Signs of Illness
If you notice your kiddos getting sick, keep them home from school. Not only will this prevent them from spreading anything they already have, but it will also prevent your little ones from collecting any other germs or bacteria that could make them even more ill for longer! Give them plenty of low-sugar fluids and healthy foods, while encouraging rest time. Sleep can be the best healing!
We know that you love your kiddos, and you know that to keep them healthy, there’s plenty to KNOW, plenty to DO, and plenty of us cheering you on! They, and you, have already made it this far, so something must be right. We trust you found some inspiration and helpful tips in this month’s blog. Leave us some comments on what you do to help your kids stay healthy during the school year, we would love to see them!