Summer is almost over which rings in the back-to- School Season (and also cold and flu season)!
Kids and parents alike may be excited for this time of year, but one thing this Mom is NOT excited for is the sniffly noses and illness that seem to come with it.
Riding in school buses, sitting in stuffy classrooms and mingling around crowded lunch rooms make it easy for nasty cold germs to make their way home with your child. Then, once one person in the household gets sick, doesn't it then seem to make its way to every person in the family? Ugh! Well, this year I am determined to ward off those back to school germs and keep my family well & healthy, and you can too!
Here are some quick tips to keep your family's immune system in tip top shape for the start of the new school year!
- Stock pile the fridge and pantry with whole, healthy foods and snacks that contain lots of vitamins and minerals essential to keeping our bodies working hard to fight off illness! Remember: the more colorful your plate is, the better! Pack healthy snacks such as berries, grapes, apples (maybe add some nut butter for dipping), veggies such as broccoli or carrot sticks (maybe add some hummus for dipping), and whole grain crackers or cereal bars.
- Reduce consumption of sugary drinks and junk food that may contain empty calories and little to no nutrition
- Read Labels! The less ingredients on the item, the better! If you can't read it, why eat it? I always try and remind people, you are what you eat!
- Add a multi-vitamin to your child's daily routine
- Wash hands often and get the kiddos into the habit!
- Get plenty of rest and exercise!
If your child is like mine, then it's nearly impossible to get them to drink or eat a lot of the healthy stuff that will keep their immune system in good shape, especially now, when they are going back to school!
- Add Chaga to your family's diet
Did you know that CHAGA has more antioxidant content than any food on the planet?
Adding chaga to your diet will regulate your immune system and keep the whole family healthy all year. It will even keep seasonal allergies at bay!
What is Chaga, you ask? Click the picture below to get more info!
But how do you get the kids to drink chaga? Here are some delicious and EASY recipes that the whole family will love:
Hot Chaga Chocolate
- 1 TBSP butter.
- 1 TBSP pure maple syrup.
- 2 TBSP organic cocoa powder.
- 1.5 cups of brewed chaga tea (2 TBSP dried chaga in water simmered over low heat for 1-2 hours, then strain off the tea)
- pinch of sea salt or pink himalayan salt.
What a yummy way to warm up during the fall and winter weather!
Chaga Superfood Smoothie
Makes 1 large or 2 average-sized smoothies
- 2 cups Almond Milk or Nut Milk of Choice (hemp, coconut or cashew would work well)
- ½ c. frozen cherries
- ½ c. frozen blueberries
- 2 c. organic baby kale (baby kale has a nice mild flavor, if you can’t find it, spinach, romaine or any other dark leafy green will work)
- 1 tsp. chaga (It’s always best to start with smaller doses of superfoods)
- 1 Tbsp. raw cacao powder
- 1 Tbsp. chia seeds
- splash of vanilla extract (optional, but so good!)
- 1 Tbsp. coconut oil (optional)
- dash of cinnamon (optional)
Add all ingredients to a high-powered blender (Vitamix in my opinion, is the best), blend well and enjoy. If you have time, allow chia seeds to sit in almond milk in Vitamix for a few minutes before adding other ingredients for a nice, thick consistency.
Plain and Simple Chaga Tea:
Simply place the mushroom or powder in a pan of water. Bring to a boil, then let simmer until the water turns a rich reddish brown color, or at least an hour to extract all its health benefits. (The time is a lot less if using a powdered version.)
Strain tea. Add honey or maple syrup, or even a slice of fresh ginger, and enjoy!
You can reuse the chaga mushroom several times. Simply put it in a glass jar without a lid, and store in the refrigerator. Store leftover chaga tea in the refrigerator, as well.
You can add this tea elixir in place of water to any food recipe as well like brownie mix or pancakes!
Happy Back to School!