A healthy child grows up to be a healthy adult and the parents get to breath a sigh of relief. One way to boost your child’s health is by boosting his immune system. You do this by feeding the child healthy food. In addition, it promotes proper growth, good development, a strong body and prevents sickness and diseases.
The immune system is the body’s defense against infection and having good immunity means the body is strong to be able to resist infections.
How to boost the immune system?
Your child’s immune system can be nourished by providing food with the essential nutrients. Hence, that is why a balance diet is important to get all the essential nutrients. Some of the common immune boosting nutrients are listed below.
Nutrient and Part of the Immune Function
- Vitamin A: Antioxidant
- B-vitamins: Needed for antibody formation and lymphocyte production
- Vitamin C: Antibacterial and antihistamine
- Vitamin E: Antioxidant and needed for antibody formation
- Calcium: Needed for macrophage production
- Iron: Needed for production of white blood cells and antibodies
- Magnesium: Needed for antibody production and to control histamine levels
- Selenium: Antioxidant and needed for antibody production
- Zinc: Antioxidant and to maintain and protect the thymus
A balance diet means giving fruits, vegetables, lean meats, fish, nuts, seeds and whole grains to your child. Add variety to the child’s diet by giving potatoes, tomatoes, avocadoes, broccoli, cabbage, sweet corn and even shiitake mushrooms. For fruits, buy commonly available local fruits all year round like papaya, guava, watermelon, mango and banana. Dried fruits are also good like seedless raisins, dates, prunes or dried apricots. Nuts or seeds can be pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, cashew nuts, almonds or sesame seeds.
Below is a simple food list of commonly found food sources containing the essential nutrient:
Vitamin and the Food Sources
- Vitamin A: Whole milk, egg, butter, oily fish
- Vitamin B1: Whole wheat flour, sunflower seed, brown rice
- Beta-carotene: Sweet potato, orange, broccoli, green leafy vegetables
- Vitamin B2: Egg, poultry, yoghurt, cucumber
- Vitamin B3: Soya bean, poultry, potato
- Vitamin C: Citrus fruits, spinach, green leafy vegetables
- Vitamin D: Shiitake mushrooms, sardine, eggs
- Vitamin E: Sweet potato, avocado, oatmeal
- Vitamin K: Soya bean, cabbage, cauliflower, cheese
Mineral and the Food Sources
- Iron: Egg yolk, red meat, sardine, lentils
- Calcium: Tofu, yoghurt, sardine, green leafy vegetables
- Magnesium: Nuts, seeds, fish, green leafy vegetables
- Selenium: Seafood, sesame seed, pumpkin seed, sunflower seed
- Zinc: Whole grains, poultry, sunflower seed
As shown above, the types of food mentioned are commonly available and easy to find in the local markets. It is not a complete list but it goes to show that it is not so difficult to find and give our children the proper nourishing food that they need for growing up.