It’s like you can’t go a day without hearing someone say how it’s “cold and flu” season. Some how the seasons are now spring, summer, fall winter, and flu. I’m not sure when the flu got its own season, but I know I refuse to just roll over and accept that my kids will just be sick constantly for the next 4 months.
No, this is not a vaccine debate. I won’t even go there with that can of worms.
This IS about how to keep your kids (and yourself!) healthy before they get a cold and what to do if they catch one.
How does a crunchy mom keep her kids (and her self) healthy in the winter?
I know you’ve heard that one before. Stock up on the oranges and vitamin C gummies and make sure you double the dosage. You can’t take too much vitamin C.
This is a dropper I just started giving to my sons. Vitamin D3 is the stuff that they need to get from the sun, but it’s so tough to get in the winter. Check the recommended dosage on the bottle.
If the dropper of D3 isn’t sounding appealing to you, get outside and play for a little each day. The more of the skin that gets exposed to the sun the better!
I absolutely love probiotics. Every person in my family takes 2 doses a day. For the kids, I have the probiotic powder that I add to their green juice each day. It blends in nicely and you’d never know it was there. They take 1/8 tsp to 1/4 tsp if their bellies are upset.
This one might be tough to get some kids to take. I started my oldest taking an eye dropper full each day when he was 18 months old, so by now, he’s a pro. I’ll give him 1 eye dropper full 2 times a day on a normal day, and 2 eye droppers full 3 times a day if he’s feeling sick. Here’s one that a friend of mine swears by for her picky little guys. It’s even lemon flavored!
Avoiding doctor’s offices or indoor play areas
It’s so ironic: you go in to the doctor’s office for a well visit with a well child and you leave with a child who will come down with a nasty cold in 2 days who will need to go back to the doctor. As long as you can help it, avoid places where sick kids congregate. I refuse to schedule well visits for my kids in the winter. Sorry, doc, you’ll need to wait until after March to see the kids. If there’s an emergency, of course go in to see the doctor! Other than that, just reschedule until after it starts getting warm outside.
I’ve already hared with you how much I love essential oils, but I really swear by them when you’re feeling gross. You can use thieves and oregano oil on the bottoms of your feet diluted with coconut oil on your feet at night. You can make your own Vicks rub with coconut oil, beeswax, and eucalyptus oil. If you have one sick person and want to keep the rest of you from getting sick, diffuse thieves oil. There are a lot of different ways to use essential oils to stay healthy.
Raw honey and cinnamon
Raw garlic and honey
Sounds gross, tastes icky, but it really helps! Crush a clove of garlic, wait 10 minutes for the garlic to let out all of the good enzymes, mix in 1 or more tsp raw honey, and swallow.
I’ve eaten worse, but it’s still not awesome tasting. But you know what? That will knock out almost every cold you can think of: everything from the stomach flu to a yeast infection. Getting little guys to eat it is a little tough, so you’ll probably need to double up on the honey.
Drinking lots of water
Chug that water! I never leave the house without my Camelbak water bottle (I even got both of my boys their own!). It’s so easy to forget to drink water in the winter compared to in the summer; you really don’t feel like you need to drink water when you’re not dying from heat stroke.
But, hot or cold, your body really still needs 8 or more cups of water each day. Staying well hydrated helps keep your body functioning properly. Not to mention it’ll flush your system regularly.
Eating more fruits and veggies than usual
In the spring and summer, I can fruits like a crazy person. I have my own little stock pile of canned peaches and apples for when there aren’t any fresh fruits to eat. Another important one in leafy greens. These are a lot easier to come by in the late fall/ early winter, and they’re so great to boost immunity.
(True story: I hate kale. It’s so gross to me. I’ve tried the chips, and salads… everything. Still gross. Except if it’s in a juice with a bunch of fruit. Then it’s tolerable! So I get a ton of kale, juice it all, and freeze the juice in ice cube trays for when I make my green smoothies. Works perfectly!)
Avoid sugars, processed foods, and dairy as much as possible
Has anyone every after eating a big piece of cake said “wow that really hit the spot! I was feeling like I had a cold coming on and now I don’t thanks to that cake!” Probably not. But you’ve probably heard someone say that about a big fruit smoothie or a leafy salad.
Sugars and processed foods only make issues in your body worse. If you life yourself with a mucus-y mess or a hacking couch with phlegm, avoid dairy. It makes the phlegm worse and that’s the last thing you need.
How do you keep your family healthy in the colder months?