Magic tricks to superhero their immune system
By Karen Ward
As a busy mum of two, I know that as we approach winter, prevention is key when it comes to health. So whether you have baby, young children, or teenagers, it’s never too late to give your kids’ immune system a boost. For me healthy food has to be quick or at least easy to prepare, as well as packing a punch in the nutrient-density stakes. But even slow-cooking can be time-friendly.
A reasonably priced slow cooker will be your new best friend. Pop in an organic chicken, carrot, stick of celery, onion and a few cloves of garlic, top up with water and leave it to do its thing! Even if you have to pop out on the school run, you’ll arrive home to the best chicken you have ever tasted and copious amounts of immune-supporting chicken stock for soups, stews and sauces for the week ahead. Chicken stock can inhibit infection caused by cold and flu viruses; great news, as a little goes a long way.
If you want something quick and handy for snacks, take a free hour in the week to spend a bit of time filling and freeze individual zip-lock bags with a mix of berries, ripe bananas and some leafy greens, ready for blending into smoothies as needed in the week ahead.
Feeding their healthy gut bacteria is an important part of winter immunity too but there are lots of simple ways to bring it into foods you’re already eating. Increase your little ones’ intake of Prebiotic rich foods by using oats in pancakes instead of flour and adding leafy vegetables like kale to smoothies. Leeks, garlic and onions all contain the antioxidant quercetin which is both antibiotic and anti-viral and thankfully, not destroyed by cooking. Making a leek and potato soup, or throwing a red onion and garlic into their pasta sauce and blending works a treat and ensures their healthy gut bacteria can survive.