Today we did a Hungry Caterpillar book reading and 'Healthy Gut, Healthy Immune System' talk at our clinic. Had some very cute guests who were BIG fans of this book so we had a lot of fun playing games and talking about healthy food. Here are the notes if you would like to read them.
The gut plays an important part in immunity more than 70% of immune cells are found around the digestive tract. It’s no surprise then with the introduction of fast food, processed food, pesticides, environmental toxins and a fast paced world that immunity in children is being compromised. The
developing immune system is also very vulnerable to toxicity.
TOP FIVE WAYS TO ENHANCE IMMUNITY VIA THE GUT IN CHILDREN:
- Short Chain Fatty acids (SCFA) are produced by bacteria chomping down on fibre. SCFAs such as butyrate improve the intestinal barrier and therefore prevent inflammatory response
- Vaalia yogurt contains Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG ** shown in studies to decrease perception of gastrointestinal pain, 34% decreased risk of upper resp. infection in toddlers, reduce nasal blockage in allergies, shorten duration of giardia infection, decrease antibiotic associated diarrhoea, reduce risk of eczema development. Interestingly this one strain was shown to decrease hospital admission by 37% in children with cystic fibrosis. The list goes on with this strain. Amazing stuff.
- Fermented foods contain healthy bacteria. Can you sneak in some miso (paste it on meat or roast veges).. or maybe some tofu? Silken tofu can be added to smoothies. Kimchi in omelettes as well.
- Pectin is found in apples, oranges and plums. It naturally tightens gap junctions in the gut, in other words stops things from getting through the gut wall that shouldn’t be. Helps to build a nice healthy mucosal layer.
- Chamomile tea with some honey is a really beautiful way to end the day. It lowers stress and helps your gastrointestinal tract and immune system by:
b. it’s an ‘aromatic bitter’ although only slightly bitter helps to break down foods for better digestion = more nutrients for our children = less infection :)
c. Directly stimulates the immune system to fight infection by increasing lymphocyte count.
You can have a tea party with your child at the end of the day and chat about what you both did today.
I hope these tips will help you and your child to improve their immune systems. I know so many children (and then their poor parents of course…!) who were sick last year. There is SO MUCH a naturopath can do for you
and your wee ones. Please bring them to me and I will help them heal and grow :D
Next Event: 'Dr Seuss Sleep Book'! Pull out your crazy hats and bring some green eggs and ham. Ok maybe not the eggs and ham... But we will be playing Dr Seuss games and learning all about healthy sleep patterns! This will be taking place again at Sentient Being in January 2016. Keep an eye on my 'events' page on this website.
Have a great day,