Before kids, staying healthy was an individual undertaking. If you were worried about getting sick, you simply stayed home – you looked out for yourself, and yourself alone. 

But keeping a family healthy isn’t quite so simple. It’s a team effort, a collective commitment to one another’s safety and wellbeing. As all parents know, if one person comes home ill, chances are everyone in the house will get it eventually!

It’s essential, therefore, to think about your family’s immune system as a collaborative project. What can you do, as a family, to shore up your defences and refuse the enemy (read: colds and flu viruses) entry into your home? 

In this post, let’s look at a few ways you can support your family’s immune system. 

Cook Diverse, Nutrient-Rich Dinners

According to medical experts and virologists, diet plays a significant role in immune system functionality. (As they say: “You are what you eat”!). Not only is healthy eating consequential, but diverse eating is important too. To get the full range of micro-nutrients and vitamins your immune system needs, it’s best to eat a variety of whole foods. 

For further reading, check out this article from Harvard, which recommends a diet rich in vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, selenium and protein to support your immune system. 

Parents: Support Your Immune Health with Chaga Mushrooms

Parents can do their part to help the family by taking natural supplements for immune support. Chaga mushrooms, an adaptogen fungus used for centuries in ancient medicinal practices, have been shown in studies to potentially boost the human immune response. (As a bonus, it may also lower cholesterol and reduce inflammation –keeping parents looking young and spry!). 

You don’t need a lot. Just a scoop in your morning coffee or smoothie should do the trick to support a healthy immune system. It’s recommended you shop chaga mushroom powder online through a reputable source offering USDA-certified organic products. 

Credit: Ron Lach Via Pexels

Get Plenty of Sunshine and Activity (Weather Permitting)

Fresh air, sunshine and physical exercise are perhaps the oldest forms of “therapy” known to humans. So, it’s no surprise that these elemental measures work wonders for your immune system. 

Sunshine helps the body produce vitamin D, which research shows promotes immune system health. Physical exercise regulates the immune system by releasing anti-inflammatory cytokines and flushing bacteria from the lungs and airways. 

And fresh air helps ward off illness in a couple of ways. Firstly, ambient phytoncides found in nature appear to positively influence immune health. Secondly, elevated oxygen levels keep your body’s systems running efficiently. And finally – as we all know from a couple of years of COVID –the risk of airborne illness transmission is significantly lower in outdoor settings. 

Spend Time Together

As a final note, let’s look at an emerging field of study in medicine: group immune systems. Several scientific studies have looked at the link between social connection and immune health, with many concluding that close familial relationships actually boost your immune system. 

It turns out, simply spending quality time together as a family may help you fight that next cold!