Worried about your child’s health? Here is how you can keep your kid’s immunity on priority this year

Parenting might be the most challenging but fulfilling job there is. Parents want their child to be healthy and go to lengths to ensure that their child is eating well and safe but while attempting to prioritize your child’s health, it is vital to consider a number of factors that will contribute to the child’s overall well-being. It is easier and more effective to establish healthy behaviour during childhood than trying to change unhealthy behaviour during adulthood. Let us look at various ways in which parents can look at prioritise their child’s health.

Food and Nutrition: Most parents fret over their child not eating enough or healthy food. It is important to understand that your child might not feel as hungry as he/she felt yesterday or the day before. Their portion size might vary on some days and what they liked a few months back might not be their favourite food now. The idea is to come up with alternative food options that are healthy and nutritious. To ensure that your child eats healthy food, it’s a great idea to involve your kid in the vegetable and grocery shopping process. You can even involve the kid in the cooking process, by asking them to help you with little tasks and talking about the nutritional value of the meals and how it helps to build immunity and makes them stronger.

Ensure that your child is having homemade meals most days and is taking home-cooked food to eat at school during breaks. Keeping nutritious and healthy snacks on hand, such as apples and nuts also helps to a great extent. Try to avoid processed and sugary foods. Make pizza, ice cream, and chips exceptions in your household. Most importantly your child is constantly observing you as a parent, hence make it a point to lead by example and try to have nutritious home-cooked meals together as a family.

Exercise and Physical Activity:
 Encouraging children to be physically active and play outdoor games is important. As your child grows, make them understand the importance of playing outdoors. Children and teenagers who engage in regular physical activity can lower their risk of contracting a number of diseases, increase their cardiorespiratory fitness, grow strong bones and muscles, manage their weight, and lessen feelings of anxiety and sadness. It also helps in enhancing academic results like grades and test scores.

Additionally, being physically active helps develop self-confidence, better posture, fine motor skills, social skills and cognitive skills. All schools should have a recess to promote students’ participation in physical activity. Ensure your child is engaged in physical exercise before and after school by offering walking or biking, fitness clubs, or some sport which they enjoy that involves being physically active.

Emotional Wellbeing: Children and adolescents who receive social and emotional support can gain the abilities they need to identify and control their emotions, appreciate the views of others, build and sustain healthy relationships, and make better decisions. Children can learn these abilities when there is a supportive social and emotional environment at home and at school. It is important for parents to make communication a priority and regularly set aside time to listen to their children and speak to them and understand what they feel and how they think about different aspects, people and situations. Children cannot be expected to do everything at all times just because you as a parent have asked him/her to do so. It is important to explain the reason behind it. If they aren’t given a proper reason they might question why they are being asked to do it at all. Parents who take out time to explain things and reason with their children help them to understand why it needs to be done, thus they become more accepting towards doing something because of the reason behind it.

Health: Ensure that your child gets vaccinated according to the scheduled time. Make sure your child gets enough sleep, and follows healthy habits as often as possible. Encourage your child to prioritize safety while playing. If you have any worries about your child’s physical, emotional, or mental health and well-being, make an appointment with a doctor. Your doctor can assist you in creating effective childcare plans and can motivate your adolescent to take an active interest in their health.

As a parent, you would want your child to be healthy and happy. It is important to be patient with your child and not set unrealistic expectations from your child. While you work towards prioritizing your child’s health it is important to create a safe and healthy environment for your child and help them make better choices about food, health and overall well being.