Keeping kids healthy once they are back in school can seem like a challenge, here are tips for boosting kids immunity plus the best foods to help boost immunity. While this post is sponsored by Bee Sweet Citrus, our desire to help kids and families stay healthy this back to school season and beyond is ours.
The back-to-school season is a time of new beginnings and opportunities. However, for some students, this time can also be a time of increased susceptibility to illnesses. Protecting yourself, your kids and their classmates against common colds and other infections can be easier than you think if you follow these tips.
Here are 7 tips to help boost your child’s (and yours!) immune system for the school year
Eat a healthy diet.
A healthy diet can boost your immunity, you want to make sure you are eating foods that are rich in antioxidants and vitamins, this can help protect the body from free radicals that can cause inflammation and damage cells. More on the best foods to help boost immunity below!
Get plenty of sleep.
The Sleep Foundation says school aged kids (6-13 years) need 9 to 11 hours of sleep a night. It’s well known that getting enough sleep helps regulate the body’s biological rhythms, helping us stay healthy overall. Not getting enough sleep can make you more susceptible to getting sick. You or the kids have trouble sleeping? Check out our podcast on Tips For A Better Night’s Sleep….it’s our #1 downloaded podcast for a reason!
While we serve to make sure our family’s are getting balanced meals 3xs a day, sometimes we miss things…we all do! Taking a vitamin can help fill those gaps.
Regular exercise helps boost the immune response. Your child may be in school sports or just love to play outside, but make sure they are still active in the off-season and in the colder months where they may be indoors more.
Maintain a healthy weight.
Being overweight has been linked to decreased immunity, as well as other health problems. Be sure to consult your family’s doctor on what a healthy weight is for your child, we are not doctors.
Reduce stress levels.
Stress can leave you feeling run down and your immune system is weakened by the constant feelings of anxiety, leading to less energy to fight off illness. Parents aren’t the only ones that experience stress! Be sure you are talking to your child about anxiety, stress and mental health.
Hydration is very important! Water is an essential part of our diet, and it plays a major role in keeping our immune system functioning properly. Drinking enough water helps keep your body hydrated, which is necessary for the production of white blood cells. White blood cells are important for fighting off infection. In addition, drinking plenty of water can help flush toxins from your body, which can also help keep your immune system functioning well. Need some tips on how to get your kiddos to drink more water? Read these Tips About Hydration.
The best way to boost your immune system is by eating the right foods. You want to make sure that foods that are high in antioxidants and vitamin are a regular part of your family’s diet, these help keep disease away. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that boosts the function of your immune cells. Foods that are high in fiber help keep your digestive system healthy. So, I wanted to share a list of some of the best foods to eat to help boost your kid’s immune system.
10 Of The Best Foods that Boost Immunity
- Mandarins – Due to their high content of vitamin C, mandarins are an excellent addition to your diet. Plus, due to their small size, they are easy to pack in lunches, toss in your purse or bag so that you and your child always have a healthy immune-boosting snack available.
- Oranges – These also have a high amount of vitamin C. One medium orange can have about 75% of your daily recommendation amount of vitamin C.
- Grapefruit – Also packed with vitamin C, grapefruit contains lycopene which is a potent antioxidant.
- Dark Chocolate – Yes please! Who needs an excuse to add more chocolate to their day?! Not me! Of course, everything in moderation 😉 Dark chocolate contains the antioxidant called theobromine which is said to help boost the immune system by protecting the body from free radicals. So, go ahead, keep a few squares in the fridge for you and the kids!
- Oily Fish – We love salmon! Tuna is also another option. Oily fish are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. Try this Orange Soy Glazed Salmon recipe, our family loves it.
- Broccoli – This green veggie is a good source of vitamin C and contains sulforaphane, both of which will help support your immune system. Kids not huge fans of broccoli? Make these Broccoli Tater Tots, they are an easy way to sneak some greens onto the dinner table.
- Almonds – Not only do they taste great, but they are loaded with vitamin E. Vitamin E assists in boosting your immune system by fighting off those free radicals.
- Blueberries – These little blue beauties aren’t called the King Of Antioxidants for nothing!
- Sunflower Seeds – These are also rich in vitamin E. Try adding some to salads and smoothie bowls, they are also perfect for an easy snack.
- Kiwi – Kiwi is an excellent source of Vitamin C, fiber, potassium and antioxidants.
Need some recipe inspiration to add more of these foods that boost the immune system to your day? I got you!
Here are a few of our favorites:
Looking for lunchbox inspiration on including foods that boost the immune system?
Here are a few of our favorites: