(Family Features) Heading to the classroom means opening doors to opportunities for educational and social growth, but to keep students at school day after day, it’s important to keep health top of mind. When close proximity to other children exposes them to illnesses like common colds, strong immune systems can be the difference between perfect attendance and a few days of absences.
To help boost your children’s immunity, consider these tips from the experts at Healthy Family Project.
Eat Healthy Foods
Focusing on foods that are rich in antioxidants and vitamins can help boost immunity by protecting the body from free radicals that cause inflammation and damage cells. For example, vitamin C boosts the function of immune cells and foods high in fiber help keep the digestive system healthy.
Get Plenty of Sleep
The Sleep Foundation recommends 9-11 hours of sleep each night for kids ages 6-13. Proper sleep helps regulate the body’s biological rhythms, helping people stay healthy.
Whether your children participate in sports or just enjoy playtime, encourage exercise to help boost the immune response, particularly during colder months when they may spend more time indoors.
Adults aren’t the only ones who experience stress. Talk to your children about anxiety, stress and mental health, as stress can leave them feeling run down while weakening the immune system, leading to less energy for fighting illnesses.
Hydration plays a major role in keeping immune systems functioning properly by aiding the production of white blood cells, which are important for fighting off infection.
Find more immunity-boosting recipes at HealthyFamilyProject.com.
Frozen Creamsicle Yogurt Bites
Recipe courtesy of Healthy Family Project
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
vanilla Greek yogurt
Place one piece of parchment paper on baking sheet that fits in freezer.
Peel mandarin and separate into individual slices. Place one big scoop yogurt in small bowl.
Dip each mandarin slice in yogurt, covering about half of each slice. Place individual mandarin slices on parchment paper. Add sprinkles.
Freeze at least 1 hour or overnight if adding to lunchboxes.
Source: Healthy Family Project