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August 27, 2018
Around August of every year I get a lot of questions from parents about how to keep kids from getting sick as they go back to school.
I really appreciate that parents are thinking about this. Because there are things to do to enhance the immune system and make it less likely your kid will get sick come the new year.
Before I go any further, I want to mention that if your child is experiencing symptoms that require professional help, please seek out a professional health care practitioner. This information is not intended to replace the advise of your health care provider. This is only my opinion based on what I have seen.
Top 3 Nutrition Tips
1. Reduce sugar consumption.
2. Increase good fats in the diet. (grass fed butter, olive oil, coconut oil are a few great options).
3. Drink Bone Broth. (from recommended brands such as
Fond Bone Broth or your farmer's market, not the general ones from the supermarket: ).
Top 3 Supplements for a strong immune system
1. Cod Liver Oil (Green Pastures is a great brand, as well as Nordic Naturals): Has a combo of Vitamin A and D in proper ratio which supports the immune system.
2. Minerals (calcium, magnesium, Trace Minerals, Celtic Salt): Minerals are grounding, they help calm us down, and they greatly support the immune system.
3. Congaplex Chewables from Standard Process or Whole Food Vitamin C from Health Force. Both Fantastic for general immune support.
I think the following book is fantastic for anyone who wants to learn more about how Sugar affects our health. The author has a PhD and has extensively researched the topic. I highly recommend it: Lick The Sugar Habit by Nancy Appleton
The number one thing out of all of this to focus on is to really bring down the amount of sugar the kids consume. There is an important point to mention here. The point of responsibility lies in the parents. Children always observe and look up to the parents. They want to be like them, they pick up a lot of the habits and viewpoints from the parents. So the person who needs to change first is the parent. As a parent, you can't keep on a lifestyle of eating sugar daily. Or constantly having desserts with sugar in them. You have to be the example. Which means, you need to first learn why this change is important.
Once you learn more about it, you will be motivated to make the change. Then, the entire household changes too. To assist you in the process, you will be able to find some alternatives to these treats you might be used to having. But you will have to make them at home. Once you start looking at labels, you will be amazed how many things have sugar in them.
The key is to reduce gradually and find substitutes. I recommend you look at our recipe section and listen to our podcast so that you can get more information on how to improve your health and make gradual changes in your life and your family's lives. You can also look up "keto desserts" online to find more recipes. When I say alternatives to sugar, I do not mean "sweet n low" or "splenda". Those are toxic chemicals that we should not be consuming. There are other healthier alternatives that taste fantastic and are not harmful to your health.
The rewards to your efforts will no doubt be worth it! If you are carrying extra weight, that very often comes down naturally. Energy, mental focus, anxiety, sleep all tend to improve with this one change: taking sugar out of your diet or greatly reducing it. You might also find that your kids are calmer overall. The fits become less. And this is also helpful for their focus during school time.
Check out our FLIP Your Mindset Podcast Episode Back To School: How Do I Prevent My Child From Getting Sick? for more information about these different supplements and nutrition tips.
The very last thing I will mention is that sugar is very very addictive. So you have to be a bit patient when taking it out of the diet. It doesn't usually happen overnight. It is a process and you might not always be perfect. The important thing is that you are working your way to a life that is much healthier. Even if it takes you 1-2 years, that is fantastic. I notice it typically takes people about 3-6 months to really get the hang of it. By the 1 year mark, they have a whole new and improved life on so many levels. Remember, you are laying down the foundation for you and your family's future. Keep at it. And be kind to yourself in the process.
Hope this helps.
Mariela Villaverde, L.Ac., MAOM
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