Winter is coming. Or so the popular line from Game of Thrones goes…..but really, winter is almost here, so parents of young kids will have to deal with the flu season.This pediatrician has some top tips to keep the bugs at bay.
Dr Deb Levy, who trained at the Sydney Children’s Hospital, says that a healthy diet could help protect children from typical illnesses like coughs, colds, flu, gastroenteritis and respiratory illnesses, common during cold weather.
“There is the classic toddler with the runny nose. Interestingly, 70 percent of own immune systems are in our gut so one way to control that is through our diet,” she said.
She added that children aged under five are prone to picking up viruses at daycare or preschool as their immunity systems develop.
Dr Levy, who has a toddler and a seven-month-old, shared her tips that include giving children citrus fruits, organic blueberries for their antioxidant properties, reishi or Chinese mushrooms and orange vegetables such as carrots, pumpkin or sweet potato.
She also said that superfoods, such as green, leafy vegetables, which can be perfect in a smoothie or mixed up with pasta, and homemade chicken soups, all have great anti-inflammatory properties.
Meanwhile, red meats such as beef contains zinc, fish such as salmon is rich in Omega 3 and vitamin D, while a children’s probiotic in powder form helped to settle little stomachs, while spices such as garlic and turmeric have beneficial qualities. “The goal is to minimise the number of illnesses or the severity of the illness,” Dr Levy said.
However, if children develop a rash or appear very unwell, parents should take them to hospital and see their GP.
If you become concerned about any symptoms, please seek immediate medical attention – we have some hotlines and suggested websites for further information and advice – https://www.stayathomemum.com.au/my-kids/babies/important-hotlines-websites/
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