It’s nearly impossible to turn on the television, open a phone news app or an actual paper these days and not see a story about the flu. And forget Facebook and Twitter streams, they’re sick with updates about being sick.
I won’t spend time arguing the efficacy of the flu shot. I will offer some other solutions (beyond the obvious hand washing) for you and your kids that are great ways to ward off the sickness that seems to be spreading like wildfire. The good news is they are all found in your kitchen.
1. Eat More Greens. It’s a new year. What’s a better resolution than adding more dark and leafy to your diet? Our chlorophyll enhanced friends are chock full of iron and trace amounts of zinc which both help boost your immune system. Never fear, greens aren’t gross. I promise. Check out this breakfast scramble that’s chock full of green goodness or this kale salad that Shari, from My Judy the Foodie tested it on her kids. It’s tween approved.
2. Try some good germ: Wheat that is. Throw in some flax and chia seeds and you’ve got the trifecta of tiny immune heroes. You’ll get more iron, B vitamins and omega3 fats that will help nourish your immune system. You can add these little powerhouse foods to salads, smoothies or even tasty treats like these pumpkin flax muffins.
3. Stash the Sugar. I know, I know, after a cookie-laden holiday season we are all, kids and adults alike, a few (thousand) grams of sugar over our annual daily allowance. Sugar is linked to poor immune function, so if you want and
instant boost, kick the sweet stuff and stick to vitamin packed fruit for your sugar fix. Smoothies or juices with vitamin C fruits and veggies can be fun for kids and great tools to strengthen immunity.
These are just a few of the ways you can take control of your immune system and keep the flu out of your house this season. Remember, prevention doesn’t just come from a shot. While these aren’t guarantees to keep you safe from the flu, they certainly will go along way toward building yours and your kids’ immune systems so that they are ready for a good fight.