Whether it’s the Winter sniffles, viral bugs brought home from childcare or a dreaded whole-family-gastro scenario, our immune system has a big part to play in helping fight off illness. An immune response can help protect the body from bacteria, viruses and germs. With this in mind, it is vital that we take care of our immune system so it can take care of us! Here’s four ways you can help boost the immunity of your whole family so you can avoid illness, or if you do happen to fall ill, get well again as soon as possible.
1. Eat the rainbow
An apple a day keeps the doctor away. This age-old rhyme is actually grounded in science and backed by health professionals the world over. But it doesn’t stop there. Doctors recommend that a diet rich in protein, vitamins and zinc may help boost your immune system. So how do we get more of these nutrients off the dinner plate and into our children’s mouths? Make it fun!
Add almonds (packed with magnesium and Vitamin E) to a breakfast smoothie or put eggs (one of the only foods with naturally occurring Vitamin D) on the menu. For lunch, whip up some savory pancakes with sweet potato (full of Vitamin C) or a green smoothie. Then at dinner time, serve up a rainbow platter that no one will be able to resist. Use fresh vegies, fruit, nuts and seeds, lentil dips, and salmon cakes to tempt their tastebuds and boost their immune systems.
Eating fresh produce is easy on the Mornington Peninsula and surrounds as we have access to plenty of farm gate shops. Check out the list of farm gate produce stores and support local business.
2. Keep active
The latest research indicates that not only does exercise lessen the risk of infection but it can bolster our immune systems. However, rushing off to a marathon with no training will probably cause more harm than good. The perfect balance? Exercising for 30 minutes or more, most days of the week. Family walks around the block or creating your own Parkour obstacle course in the backyard are fun and easy ways to get your 30 minutes in. For some backyard Parkour course inspiration, check out our how-to video here!
Role modelling an active lifestyle and showing your kids that you place value on physical wellbeing are the simplest ways to instil good practices in them. Stuck inside? Have a family dance party or do a few rounds of musical statues.
Another benefit of physical activity is the impact it has on our stress levels. Considering stress can reduce the immune system’s ability to fight of antigens, there’s all the more reason to get moving!
3. Sleep well
Lack of sleep has been shown to have a detrimental impact on recovery time as well as staying well in the first place. A study in Germany in 2019 suggests that a sound sleep improves immune cells, known as T cells. Plus, you know your body well enough to know that an early night is sometimes the very best medicine.
Plenty of physical activity throughout the day, a healthy dinner and a predictable evening routine all contribute to good quality sleep. Turn off those devices and cuddle up with some books instead and you will soon be off to dream-land. You’ll be well rested and ready for another day!
All our programs are designed with health, development and enjoyment in mind. If you would like to add Parkour Ninja training or Acrobatics to your weekly immune-boosting routine, then Acro Kids can help. Take a look at all our programs here.