A 100% healthy winter
25 ways to keep your baby snotless and cough-free this winter... it can be done.
1- Breast booster
- Breastmilk contains amazing immune boosting properties, as well as leucocytes that fight germs and inhibit bacterial growth.
- Your antibodies are also passed through breastmilk, giving your baby disease-specific immunity. So try to breastfeed through winter.
2- Mix it up
- Giving your weaned baby a varied diet- one full fruit, vegetables and plenty of protein- is key for a strong immune system.
- Avoid foods high in sugar and fat as these are known immune suppressors.
3- Colour boost
- Fill your plates with colour: yellow and orange fruit and veg, such as pumpkin and oranges, are rich in vitamin A and carotenoids, which help block bacteria from entering the body.
- Berries, such as bluerberries and strawberries, are high in antioxidants that fight infection-causing bacteria.
4- Spice it up
- Garlic is nature's natural medicine.
- It is rich in allicin: an anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial agent and is a huge immune bosster.
- So don't be shy with this wonder bulb in preparing meals.
5- Drink up
- Fluids, especially water, regulate temperature, eliminate toxins and waste, and cushion our spinal cord and joints.
- Make sure that your baby is getting enough fluids this winter- breastfeed or formula feed your baby often.
- Give older babies sippy cups of water, diluted juice or extra juicy fruits such as oranges, especially in dry climates.
6- Bottoms up!
- If your baby is holding her own bottle, avoid letting he lie down to drink as the sucking motion can pull secretions from the back of the baby's nose into the inner ear, putting her at higher risk for developing ear infections.
- Instead, hold your baby up at an angle while bottle-feeding.
7- Ditch the dummy
- Not only does sucking on a dummy also pull secretions into your baby's ear and increse her chance of ear infection, dummies are a breeding ground for bacteria.
- If you can't ditch the dummy entirely, sterilise it often and make sure no other siblings or friends have a suck.
8- Prevent with probiotics
- Probiotics are naturally occurring organisms found in our intestinal tracts that promote health and fight disease- simply put, they are the good bacteria that fight the bad bacteria.
- Consider giving your child a probiotic supplement over winter to boost her immune system.
9- Vitamin supplements
- If your child is not getting a varied diet- and many toddlers don't- consider a multivitamin or boosting supplement.
- Talk to your doctor or clinic sister first, but there are a number of over-the-counter kinds that boast a health and immune boost.
10- Jab the germs
- Babies from six months can get the flu jab (they get halfa dose, then a booster a month later).
- The flu jab is seasonal and will help prevent your child from getting influenza (not a common cold).
- Speak to your clinic about giving your whole family the injection.
11- Don't wait, vaccinate
- Making sure that your whole family and any caregivers are up to date with all their vaccinations will go a long way in preventing your infant from getting sick this winter- it creates a safety net around your baby, also called herd immunity.
12- Splish, splash, splosh
- The most effective way of halting the spread of infections is to wash hands frequently.
- You do not need to use an antibacterial soap, simply wet hands and rub them together with plain soap for 15-30 seconds.
- Teach children to wash their hands before eating and after coughing or sneezing.
13- Get hot and steamy
- Keeping the mucus in the nasal passages thin and moving is vital to eliminate an environment in which germs can grow.
- Keeping a warm-mist humidifier going at night will keep your little one's air and airways moist and less prone to infections.
- Recent research from the American Academy of Paediatrics has shown that low levels of vitamin D are associated with an increased risk