Tired Of Kids Getting Sick?

Tired Of Kids Getting Sick?

Tired Of Kids Getting Sick?

7 Simple Practical Ways to Boost Your Kids Immunity

How many times have you been told that diet is the key to immunity?

Serve your kids a healthy diet, and they will be healthy?

What your kids eat is the foundation to them staying well during the winter months…

 

I know, I know… You’ve heard it a million times…

But are you making a conscious effort to put his into practice?

It’s easy to know something, but often harder to put into practice.

Let me show you 7 simple and practical lifestyle ways you can boost your kid’s immunity through diet.

1. Brightline’s

Choices are what confuse. So pre-decide your options for your kids and make hard lines out of them.

During the winter months, sugar and sugary products can often be the straw the breaks the camels back.

So, if there is a sickness going around or your kids seem a little “off” (mothers intuition comes in here) – then have a bright line of No sugary food item’s.

How this plays out in our house…

My kids will ask for an ice-cream, immediately I think –  how have they been or has there been any sickness going around that is taking out their class-mates… if the answer is yes to any of those – I say No. If all seems with them, then I make that decision on if they have an empty stomach (another Brightline for me is No sugary products on an empty stomach).

All this takes a split second to register in my brain and I can give reasons to my kids when I say No. And they ‘get’ it. Occasionally one of my kids will pass on something sugary as while they look ok, they don’t feel 100%… they make those decisions for themselves!

Brightlines. They make eating decisions easy, and it is something that I teach my kids… when you feel a little crappy… sugar will often make it worse. I wish I was raised with this intuitive eating practice. 

 

2. Replacement’s

Serve a healthy diet…

What does that mean?

It’s overwhelming when thinking eat healthily…

But it doesn’t have to be.

Small changes add up.

So instead of thinking large scale ‘eat healthy’ think smaller.

Pick one or two foods that your kids have that are not-so-healthy and choose healthier replacements.

 

For example:

Do they love dessert? Do a fruit platter, frozen berries or stewed fruit and yoghurt instead. 

Do your kids binge on sugar? Instead of buying lollies or chocolate – bake with your kids – when they get used to that baking, experiment with grated carrots or pureed pumpkin in the muffins or cookies.

Do your kids love fish and chips? Make your own at home and add in some other root veggies such as sweet potato or pumpkin.

The trick is to start with one thing… one thing you can change. Sure it’s sometimes not easy – but it’s much easier than your kids being sick!

 

Replacements to your kid’s unhealthy foods are one small step to boosting their immunity.

 

3. Fun

Make healthy food fun, by growing a garden or sprouting on your window sill, or cooking a healthy meal with your kids.

One of my kids was having a hard time opening her mind up to trying new veggies, (and of course a larger veggies intake is linked to a healthier immunity) so we started a cooking night.

Fast forward a few short months, and she is choosing to put pumpkin puree in dishes and loves to cut up mushrooms for everyone.

She found cooking fun.

So what do your kids find fun?

Can you experiment or play with healthy food so your kids develop a positive experience of those foods?

 

NOTE: Choosing to eat healthily is affected mainly by past experiences, so for very young kids focus on the experience of healthy food rather than the filling their belly with healthy food…. Parenting healthy eating is an endurance race, not a sprint

4. Smoothie’s

So easy to chuck a whole lot of healthy foods in there and kids drink it all.

Banana makes a good texture and adds some sweetness – don’t be afraid to try a greenish banana as that will give a fibre that their gut will love.

Frozen berries, spinach are all favourites in our house.  

If you want to get, more inspiration check out this link for toddler smoothies.

5. Invest in a Food Processor

Invest in a food processor.

See it as just that… an investment.

When I brought my first food processor a few years back it changed the way I cook.

It makes serving healthy foods easy.

You can get finely diced veggies that will go un-noticed in everything from burger patties to baking.

They can be expensive, so keep an eye out for sales on at your local stores.

5. Narrow Focus to their First Meal

Serve a sugar-filled breakfast; kids will crave sugar for the rest of their day. Affecting their choices towards the not-so-healthy options for the whole day.

So, narrow your focus on breakfast-making that is high in whole unprocessed foods.

Some examples are:

Egg with avocado on whole-grain toast.

Porridge – if you have to sweeten it, do so with honey or stewed fruit.

Bircher muesli or Oats in general – here are some recipes ideas

Egg-Muffins or generally anything with eggs in as they will help keep your kids satisfied for longer. 

One of the first changes I make with most of my clients is to change breakfast. This is a game-changer when it comes to daily cravings

5. Train-Taste for Probiotic-Rich Foods

Probiotics…

Do you have these in your cupboards or fridge with the hope they will keep you or your kid’s immunity boosted?

Do away with spending money on probiotic supplements and instead make your own probiotic-rich foods… making a game out of trying these sour foods will help your kids to keep trying and eventually accept the sour taste (you too!).

Try this kid-friendly Kruat or dive into this fantastic spread.

If you have an abundance of Brussel-sprouts, then give this recipe a go.

It can be daunting making your first batch of sauerkraut… It’s more about your confidence than a skill set, so attend a class or get a person you know ferments to teach you – having someone to reassure you is the fastest way to help boost your confidence when fermenting foods.

It’s super easy to ferment and when you have a probiotic-rich food in your fridge, like the sauerkraut, you’ll feel so empowered that your kids can quickly get nutritious foods.. even on the days you cannot be arsed cooking!

TIP:  For icing on the cake when it comes to supplements during the winter months, I recommend Vitamin D with Vitamin K.  You can get online or in-store in liquid form. 

You don’t eat healthily… you eat healthIER… one meal/snack at a time.

It all adds up.

So start with one focus. Choose one of the seven above and start there.

Your kids will soon be the ones that seem to ‘escape’ getting sick when everyone in their class has days off.

Their immunity will be stronger because of the choices you make, daily and meal by meal…

 

Where will you start?

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Preparing Brussel Sprouts so Kids Love Them

Preparing Brussel Sprouts so Kids Love Them

Brussel Sprouts Kids Love

Brussel Sprouts have been tard with the wrong brush.  

Bitter?

Only if you don’t get the selection right.

Below is a printable that will help you to introduce Brussel sprouts into your families diet –

Show your Brussel sprouts the love they deserve – and they will help your kids stay healthier through the winter months.  

How to Introduce to Babies?

As a Puree: Steam the young Brussel Sprouts and blend them into a root vegetable such as parsnip or sweet potato.

Chunker option:  They pair well with Peas, so make this recipe. The added parsley is so delicious you could make double and have some on a cracker or two for you!

Whole: Steam or Roast to bring out nutty flavour.  Cut in half and roast these goodies up. make sure you roast until they are soft as the tough leaves if not cooked can be a  choking hazard. Or if in doubt steam to make sure they are super soft.

—   Brussel Sprout Kid-Approved Recipe Ideas  —

Brussel Sprout Chips

Great if you kids love crispy food such as chips.  You can add a little vinegar to this recipe if they like the sour taste of vinegar.

Brussel Sprout Cheese Toastie

Perfect for school lunches or a quick snack. 

Probiotic Rich Brussel Sprouts

The sour mix with bitter, this a perfect training taste food.  Shred a little of these and use on the cheese toastie or add a small bit to add a zing to any meal from mac and cheese to a dhal. 

—   Recent Training Kids Taste’s Blogs  —

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Probiotic Brussel Sprouts

Probiotic Brussel Sprouts

Fermented Brussel Sprouts

About Brussel Sprouts

How do you make a super-hero an ultimate super-hero?

Fill her up with Fermented Brussel sprouts!

This is the ultimate superfood. 

A natural prebiotic, made into a probiotic AND a nutritional powerhouse of vitamins, minerals & health-inducing phytochemicals – what else could you ask for?

How to introduce to Kids?

Use smaller, firm, fresh Brussel sprouts as these will be sweeter.

Either dice a flower or two and add to burgers, coleslaw or even blend a small amount into a smoothie.  If kids are already partial to other sourish foods such as sauerkraut it will be easier for them to develop their taste for these little beauties… If they are still starting on their sour training adventure – then keep trying –  making the ‘trying’ fun.

Ingredients
  • 8-10 Brussel Sprouts – choose smaller, firm and bright-green for better results.
  • Culture starter or Whey (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp Himalayan salt
  • 2 cups of luke-warm filtered water
  • FLAVOUR OPTIONS
  • Option one: 3 Cloves garlic diced, 1-inch ginger cut into cubes.
  • Option two: 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1 clove garlic
  • Option three: 1 chilli cut into rounds, 1-inch ginger cut into cubes

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1

Sterilise jar either in boiling water for 5 min or oven at 100 degrees C for 30 min (place in a cool oven and leave in oven to cool down).

Step 2

Cut the stalk of Brussel sprouts, remove any loose or yellow outer leaves then 1/4 them lengthwise (keeping a little stalk on all four 1/4).

Step 3

Measure out water and dissolve salt into it.

Step 4

Prepare your prefered flavour option and roughly mix into Brussel sprouts.

Step 5

Place flavoured Brussel sprouts into a sterilized jar and pour over water with salt until covers Brussel sprouts.

Step 6

Weigh down Brussel sprouts with a weight or a cut apple. Leave in dark place for 2weeks or more.

Step 7

After a few days, you’ll see bubbles… this is a sign that fermentation has started and the probiotics are multiplying.

Step 8

Keep tasting after 2 weeks and when it is to your liking regarding sourness taste, then store in the fridge. Use over winter and into Autumn by dicing into salads, as a snack or thrown over your favourite pasta meal.

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    Fermented Foods Kids Love

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    The Secret to Healthy Kids

    The Secret to Healthy Kids

    The Secret to Healthy Kids All Parents Should Know

    + How to empower kids to make healthy decisions printout

     

    Imagine baking bread, but, you forget to add the flour?

    It would be a bit of a flop.

    Flour is the ingredient that is the crux of a tasty loaf of bread.

    And there is a secret, no one talks about that is the crux of having a healthy, thriving kid. 

    Do you want to know what it is?

    The one thing above all else to concentrate on as a parent that would help your child be the healthiest they can be?

    Take care of their Gut (and teach your child to take care of their Gut).

    Your child’s gut is where 80% of their immune system lies (1). It is where hormones are made (2), it is where the outside world meets their inside world.

    Without a healthy gut, you cannot have a healthy child.

     

    In this blog, you will get an introduction to:

    1. Why Digestive Health Matters in Kids
    2. How your kid’s Microbiome affects their health
    3. How to empower your kids to make healthy choices 
    4. What foods Nourishes their gut and kid-friendly ways to get them into your child. 

    AND a FREE HANDOUT is included… so keep reading. 

     

    Why Digestive Health Matters in Kids

    Gut. Aka, Microbiome, Microbiota, Digestive System or Colon. While all of these words have their own specific definition, for ease I will use these words to refer to the part of the large intestine where loads of bacteria are housed.

    Your child’s microbiota is located at the end of their digestive system, in their large colon.

    The microbiome refers to the millions of bacteria that live inside the digestive system.

    We, as humans, have more bacteria cells in us than we do human cells.

    Lots more.

    Look at your hand… If your hand represented how many bacteria and human cells you have in your body combined, the area of your pinky is human, and the rest of your hand is bacteria.

    If I compared you to me,  99.9% of our genetic material is exactly the same… but our microbiome is probably 99.9% different.

    Our differences, the difference between a constantly sick child and a thriving child has more to do what is in ones microbiome than a genetic difference.

     

    Ok, I know what your thinking…

    Isn’t bacteria bad?

    That’s why we sterilise all our baby toys, why we wash our hands with antibacterial soap and why we take antibiotics when we are sick…

    It was once thought we were doing good by living in a bacteria-free world… but time for an upgrade in our thinking…

    Not all bacteria are bad… you would be very sick if you didn’t have any bacteria.

    Your child needs bacteria not only to thrive but to survive.

    Learning to take care of these bacteria located in the Gut will help your child be the healthiest they can be.

    I like to think of them as a pet that lives inside me. In our house, we call them ‘gutties’. I have taught my kids that they need to take care of their gutties if they want to stay healthy – below I’ll show you how to do the same for your kids.

     

    How Micbotiotia an Affect Your Kids Health

    Our understanding of how these little guys affect us is growing daily. What we know,  as of today is;

    Gutties are involved in:

    • Gut maturation
    • Education of the immune system
    • Protection against harmful virus and bacteria
    • Influencing brain activity
    • Affecting metabolism
    • Absorption of vitamins and minerals

    What this means for your growing child is that their microbiome (Gut) can influence:

    • Your child’s life-long health
    • Your child’s risk of food allergies and autoimmune disease
    • How often they get sick
    • Your child’s risk of developing obesity, heart disease & cancer later in life
    • Your child’s behaviour
    • Your child’s cognitive development (IQ)
    • Your child’s energy levels

    This list will keep getting longer with more research.

    So, if you want to have thriving, healthy kids…

    Then the way to those healthy kids is through their Gut. Teaching your kids to take care of their gutties is a gift that keeps giving.

     

    How to Empower Kids to Make Healthy Choices

    To help kids understand something it is easier for them if they can ‘see’ it.

    Below is how to explain microbiome (or ‘gutties’ as we call them in our house) to kids.

    Explain the below to your kids, then, during dinner concentrate on how feeding gutties with food ‘tastes amazing.’  These two strategies are magical ingredients when empowering kids to make healthy choices for themselves.

    (Please excuse my drawings, it’s a skill I am working on!)

    Below is a printable version… Feel free to print it out and if you want to share it on your social media feel free… the more parents explaining this to kids, the more empowered generation we will have.

    Note: The whole point of explaining this to kids is so that you put the idea in their heads that when they eat they are not only eating for themselves, but for their ‘pet’… their “gutties”. 

    Get FREE Printouts of the list of foods that are good for gutties AND  kid-friendly ideas to serve it.

    FYI 

    The best way to look after ‘gutties’ is with diet.

    It only takes 24 hours of eating a better diet for your child’s microbiome to change.

    So read the list below and start making plans of how you can get foods good for gutties into your kid’s diet…

    And remember, changing diet is not an overnight process… small sustained changes over time makes huge gains.

    Is your Child in their first 1,000 days?

    During your child first 1,000 days their gut is maturing. The more you can do to feed their gutties either through breastmilk or feeding their gutties when you introduce solids and beyond, the better they will be off when they grow up.

    Sign up to my FIRST foods free email course if your in the introducing foods stage.

    Also as a life-style hint, let you baby play in sand and dirt, adpot a dog. A little dirt is perfect for your child’s developing gut.

    What Food Nourishes Gutties?

    When it comes to encouraging people to change their diet, I am a big fan of ‘adding in’ rather than taking out.

    So, concentrate on the three general food groups that nourish gutties. By eating more of these foods, you will crowd out the other foods that do not nourish gutties.

    The three groups are Soluble fibre, Pre-biotics Foods and Probiotic foods.

    Want a quick way to help gutties flourish?

    If it gets too overwhelming of what specific foods to eat… then the quick way is to think unrefined plant base diversity (aka as many different plants as possible) – we often count how many unrefined plant-based foods we have eaten in a day. It has been a great way for my kids to ‘try’ the new food on their plates. 

    Foods High in Soluble Fibre

    Some of the top soluble fibre foods include raw oats, lentils, beans, avocados, kumara (sweet potato), broccoli, pears, pumpkin, spinach, carrots and apples, broccoli, pears, flaxseed and sunflower.

     

    Soluble Fibre Foods for Kids?

    To add more fibre to your family’s diet, try Bircher muesli made with kefir for breakfast. Or when you do you next Lasagne or Chili, swap ½ the mince for lentils — snack on carrots with hummus or fruit instead of crackers & muesli bars. Small changes can make a big difference.

    You can also use smoothies to your advantage, make the base either kefir or coconut water and add in greenish banana and or berries to help make it palatable for your kids then put some spinach and ground flaxseeds. It’s a fun way to feed their gutties while feeding themselves while eating a diversity of plant-based foods.

     

    Foods High in Prebiotics 

    Prebiotic foods feed your microbiome.  It’s like putting fertilizer on a plant. These foods will help your microbiota to thrive.  Foods high in prebiotics include garlic, onions, leek, green banana’s, apple, seaweed,  sweet potato, asparagus, almonds, cinnamon and turmeric.

     

    Pre-biotic foods for Kids?

    To add more of these to your family’s diet try blending onions or leeks into your next meal – kids sometimes can take a bit to enjoy the texture of onions, so blend them up instead. The more they have meals with onion and garlic blended in, the more your kids will be exposed to this food and therefore the more likely they will willingly to accept onions not blended down the track.

    For lunch, you can make some rice balls that they can wrap with the small packets of seaweed. The cooked and cooled rice and seaweed is a double whammy of goodness for your little one’s gutties.

     

    Note: make sure the seaweed is made with olive oil and not canola or sunflower oil.

    Foods High in Probiotics

    Probiotic foods are foods that contain live bacteria. These bacteria will enhance your child’s microbiome. Foods that are fermented, cultured or Lacto-fermented all have live bacteria. Specific foods include fermented vegetables, cultured dairy and some Japanese favourites.

     

    Probiotic Foods for Kids?

    Cultured (fermented) vegetables:

    Any vegetables… Sauerkraut, fermented kumara & kimchi are a few that can be made kid-friendly.

    If I had a magic wand that granted every parent the ability to make one recipe, do you know what that recipe would be?

    Sauerkraut.

    This recipe is the kid-friendly version that after a bit of training their taste buds, your kids will love eating. Sauerkraut is the one constant in my kid’s lunch box; they love teaching their class-mates and teachers about sauerkraut.

    For more ideas of how to introduce Fermented Foods to kids check out this guest blog.

    Fermented Dairy:

    Kefir and natural yoghurts. You can buy both of these at the supermarket – make sure they are not loaded with sugars or sweeteners – even better is if they have been cultured rather than yoghurt with live cultures added in at the end.

    If in doubt, go for the natural, no added sugar/sweetener varieties.

    Smoothies are great ways to get this probiotic into your kid’s diet – for a simple recipe blend 1 cup of kefir with ½ banana, add in a pinch of cinnamon or a dash of vanilla and you have an easy banana milkshake kids will love.  (if the bananas are green then this will add a good dose of prebiotics as well!)

     

    Japanese Favourites:

    Miso and natto, two popular foods.

    Are you getting sushi for lunch? Order a miso soup to go with it. Natto is more of an acquired taste, but with some taste, training is an excellent way to start the day.

    Get FREE Printouts of the list of foods that are good for gutties AND  kid-friendly ideas to serve it.

    Taking care of gutties and feeding you kids foods that nourish their gutties will be of massive benefit for your kids, both for now but also their life-long health.

    So get on it today… I love the saying 

    Either easy now, hard later on or a challenge now and easier later on.

     

    Overview of The Secret to Healthy Kids

    Gut health is the crux of health, like flour, is the crux of bread.

    If you want to have a healthy child but it seems like there are 101 things you could be doing… Stop.

    Just do one thing…

    Concentrate on feeding your kids gutties with soluble fibre rich foods as well as pre and probiotic-rich foods. If you teach them that they have a pet inside them called gutties that will help them flourish, even better.

    Feeling overwhelmed?

    Pick on thing to do, get ingredients to have a smoothie as a snack this week, try Bircher muesli, throw away the cracker and chips as snacks and replace it with fruit or even start experimenting with your family “vegetable sides” at dinner times.

    Just do one thing until that is your family’s new normal and build from there.

    If you’re overwhelmed because you cannot remember what specific foods are good for gutties… Just think plant-based foods that are unrefined: vegetables, fruits, beans, lentils, whole grains AND think as many varieties as possible… so start again with one meal or one food which you d0n’t normally cook and go from there. 

     

    So, if you want healthy kids?

    Think

    Feed yourself, Feed your Gutties.  And teach them to feed their gutties while you’re at it.

    What food or recipe will you introduce to your kids today or tomorrow?

    Wal

     

    The Secret to Healthy Kids

    + How to empower kids to make healthy decisions printout

     

    7 Reasons your child refuses to eat anything

    7 Reasons your child refuses to eat anything

    Is Your Toddler Refusing to Eat?

    7 Reasons your child refuses to eat anything

    Susie came to me when her child refused to eat anything.

    James had been a good eater as a baby. Eating lots of variety of home-made baby foods, from pumpkin puree to liver puree.

    Then it all changed.

    He knew what he wanted to eat and no matter how much persuasion on Susie’s part, James would keep his lips seal shut.

    Susie was frustrated, deflated and tired of wasting time serving James good food.

    Sound familiar?

    All the best plans can go out the window when babies grow into toddlers with a mind of their own.

    The picky eater stage, although can be a stage can last for a lot longer than needed if it’s not addressed.

    The first part of addressing when your child refuses to eat is identifying if there is an underlying cause to your picky toddler.

    Why is my Toddler refusing to Eat?

    The Underlying causes

    Toddlers can refuse to eat for a variety of reasons.

    If your toddler was eating yesterday but is not today, then they may be coming down with a sickness. Concentrate on keeping your little one hydrated and if they are still not eating in a day or so, see a doctor.

     

    If your toddler is eating, but nothing that you consider healthy then there may be a few reasons behind their refusal.

    1. Strong-willed Child

    Imagine having an adult child who stood up to the bully, who was driven and didn’t take no for an answer, who changed the world…

    How proud would you be as a parent?

    The qualities we can for our children to have as adults are also the very qualities that frustrate the heck out of us as parents.

    Imagine what it would be like to be told, what to wear, where to go, when to go to sleep, when to go to the toilet and what to eat.

    That is a child’s world.

    And the strong-willed toddlers of this world will rally against that in anyway they can. What food passes their lips is one way they can try control their world.

    Start with the expectation that your child will eat but let go of the outcome.

    Involve your strong-willed child into meal times. Provide them with boundaries but give them a choice. Cook with them. Garden with them. Let them choose the vegetables at the supermarket.

    Work with their strong-will rather than fighting against it.

     

    2. Slow digestion (Gastroparesis)

    Does your child prefer smaller meals? Maybe even liquid meals such as smoothies.

    Does your toddler refuse foods that are higher fat or higher fibre foods?

    If you answered yes to two of the above questions, your child may have a slower digestion rate. Meaning the food takes longer to travel through your little one’s digestive system. This can be super uncomfortable for your little one, so no wonder they are refusing to eat.

    There are a number of things you can do to help your toddler through this from providing small, softer meals to having their main meal earlier on in the day (so it doesn’t affect their sleep). If you want a personalised plan then make sure you check out my Picky Eater Reboot one on one – We can get really specific to help your toddler get the best nutrition while making it easier on their digestive system.

    Want to raise an Adventurous Eaters?

    Get 10 bite-sized easy to digest emails and discover the foundations to Adventurous Eaters.

      3. Hypersensitive or Sensory Toddlers

      Does your child struggle with some textures? Possibly gagging at first bite or even sight?

      A toddler who is picky because they’re sensory will also have other cues in their life such as being annoyed at the seams in their socks and particular about what type of clothes they wear.

      It requires work to help your hypersensitive toddler to eat healthily. But it can be done. Taste and texture can be changed to suit your toddler with the aim of gradually introducing different textures.

      Slowly and gradually is the way forward here, with the aim of desensitizing your child to the textures they find troublesome.

      After having a sensory toddler myself I have developed a few tricks to changing foods textures and mitigating strong tastes. Learn more with the Picky Eater Reboot.

      4. Oral Development

      Did you baby have a tongue tie?

      Did your child skip the put-everything-in-the-mouth stage?

      Was your toddler eating puree foods as most of the past 10 months of age?

      When your toddler was a baby, did they have lots of baby-food pouches?

      A baby first learns to suck, then swallow, then they learn to chew.

      Skip any one of these steps and when your toddler tries to move foods like a chicken around in their mouth, they will find it difficult. So the food is spat out or gagged on.

      If this sounds like your child then you will want to start exercising your toddler’s mouth muscles by using a straw to drink of out (get rid of the sippy cup if your toddler still has one), humming, using a vibrating toothbrush or blowing bubbles. Here are some more fun exercises from this blog.

       

      5. Childhood nutritional deficiencies

      Is your child tired all the time?

      Do they have a poor appetite or do they have brittle hair, nails (often with white spots or ridged)?

      Nutritional deficiencies could be the cause of your child refusing to eat. This is a difficult one to get around because they have a low appetite they will not want to eat much – so the things they do eat need to be of high quality. But that can be easier said than done in toddlers.

      So what to do? 

      The first thing is to make each meal they have as high quality as possible… if your toddler is eating oatmeal at breakfast, mix some ground flaxseed or pumpkin seeds into it. Try Smoothies but add in extra nutrients such as a pre-biotic powder, ground seeds or even a little spinach. If this is not working for you and your child see a doctor or nutritionist about getting a multi-vitamin to boost them in the meantime while working on boosting their nutrition via whole-foods.

      If this is your child, be mindful that the more typical ‘child-food’ is not a good source of nutrients… so even though they will be getting more food… it is not going to help them gain more energy.

      6. Toddlers Gut Health

      Has you’re child recently had antibiotics and now refuses to eat?

      Did or does your toddler suffer from eczema?

      Does your toddler only like bland foods?

      If so, your toddler’s gut microbiome may be the reason they refuse to eat anything.

      Your toddler’s gut microbiome was seeded at birth and there is a number of things that can impact if from antibiotics to their diet.

      Changes in your toddlers gut health can affect what they choose to eat. There are plenty of things you can do as a parent to help their gut health, from baking with gut-friendly ingredients like these healthy chocolate chip cookies, to training taste buds to eat fermented foods like sauerkraut to making sure their Vitamin D is optimal.

      Optimizing kids gut health is one of my passions in life. A bit geeky, I know. But the gift that a healthy gut offers a person is life-changing.

      7. Sweetened Taste Buds

      The more you have the more you want. Taste buds are trained. And if your toddler is mainly eating sweetened foods, that is not only what they will crave. And, your toddler will have desensitization to sweet food as well as a sensitive palate to sour and bitter foods.

      That broccoli will taste horrendously yuck to them.

      So if your toddler is refusing all things veggie and will only eat refined, sweeter foods – their taste buds need a reboot.

      There are lots of ways to train your kids taste-buds, but you will need to put in the effort.

      Changing up breakfast is a game-changer for some parents as to when we start the day on sweet foods, we will likely crave that food all day. So simply changing breakfast can set your toddler up for less sweet cravings during the day.

      Check out my Picky-Eater Reboot for more ways to train your kids taste-buds.

      The overview of Why your Toddler is refusing to eat

      The picky eater stage, although can be a stage can last for a lot longer than needed if it’s not addressed.  If your child is refusing to eat anything then check to see if they have any of these underlying reasons.

       

      1. The Strong-willed Child
      2. Slow digestion (gastroparesis)
      3. Hypersensitive or sensory child
      4. Oral development
      5. Nutritional deficiencies
      6. Gut Health
      7. Sweetened taste buds

      Then make a plan going forward. And little by little your picky eater will be eating trying new vegetables like sauerkraut and Sweet Potato before they are even asked to.

      Want to raise an Adventurous Eaters?

      Get 10 bite-sized easy to digest emails and discover the foundations to Adventurous Eaters.

        7 Reasons Your Child Refuses To Eat Anything

        Baby Health Tips

        Baby Health Tips

        Baby Health Tips

         

        How to Raise A Healthy Child: from New-born to Toddler

        Imagine raising a baby with eczema-free skin, no food allergies and little or no ear infections.

        Imagine that baby being a toddler who stays healthy even after starting pre-school.

        Imagine a child that is fit, active and doesn’t get the snuffles their classmates get.

        Good health and a strong immune system are not for the lucky few. Good health is within every baby and child’s grasp.

        And, to make it easier for you as a parent… there is a secret.  Focus on one key aspect and health will follow..

        What is that one key focus?

        Gut Health for Kids.

        The Best Baby Health Tip you will Get

        Imagine a thriving garden. Lots of beautifully scented flowers – roses, tulips and sunflowers; flourishing vegetables – cauliflower, broccoli and tomatoes.

        What is the foundation of that thriving garden?

        The soil.

        And, without the right soil, you could plant a 1000 flowers or 2000 vegetables, but none of them would grow.

        It’s the work a gardener puts into the soil that enables the garden to flourish and thrive.

        So, like the soil is the foundation of a thriving garden – Gut health is the foundation of a baby’s health, both now and in their future.

         

        NOTE: if you are wondering what this means for you if you have health issues… I think health similar to being dealt a hand of cards.  You have got your cards, nothing you can do to change that… BUT, you want to play one heck of a hand. Eating well, sleeping and moving the pillars to play that hand of cards well.

         

        A Baby’s Gut Development –
        the secret to long-term health

        In your baby’s first 1,000 days their gut is still maturing.

        Think of this time as the time a gardener puts into the soil. If a gardener puts effort into making that soil the healthiest it can be, when they eventually plant a seedling – that seedling will thrive with a little sun and rain. If a gardener doesn’t spend any time nurturing that soil, after planting their seedlings they will have to put sprays and insect controls to help keep that plant growing.
        When you nurture your baby’s gut development in their 1st 1,000 days they will thrive and flourish – they will be ‘those kids who never get sick’.


        Why are your baby’s 1st 1,000 days important?

        This is the window when your baby’s gut lining and gut bacteria balance is developing.  Reaching maturity around their 3rd birthday.

        After age three, your little one’s gut bacteria becomes stable. 

        Their quality of life will be affected by what bacteria they are exposed to, or,  not exposed to in their first 1,000 days.

        Gut bacteria balance is one piece of the puzzle linked to childhood and adult diseases.

        Early good bacteria exposure playing a role in three main areas of development. Digestive, Immune and Brain development.

         

        1. Digestion and metabolism

        Gut bacteria play a key role in normal bone, growth and body development.

        Meaning, what happens now in their gut will play a role in your baby’s

        • body shape – their risk of developing obesity in childhood or later.
        • development of strong bones… or not.
        • ability to absorb nutrients from foods, or not.
        • growth, or lack of growth

         

        2. Immune System

        Gut bacteria play a key role in training your little one’s immune system. This will then affect their short term and long-term health.

        Meaning, what happens now in their gut will play a role in

        • How sick they are as a baby and child. From food allergies, skin rashes such as eczema, to ear infections and ‘acute sickness’.
        • How sick they will be as an adult. With gut bacteria being a piece of a puzzle in the formation of adult diseases such as autoimmune, diabetes, obesity, cancer, even heart disease

         

        3. Brain and Neurological development

        Gut bacteria play a key role in not only their mood but how they react to life situations.

        Meaning, what happens now in their gut will play a role in

        • Your baby’s temperament.
        • Your child’s behaviour and ability to throw tantrums.
        • Your precious one’s moods, from depression to anxiety (now and later on)
        • Your little one’s ability to concentrate, learning now and later when in school.

         

        Take a pause for all of that to sink in.

        Overwhelmed? I was when this was brought to my attention.

        But…  there are some simple things that can be done.

        7 Baby Health Tips

         

        1. Your health during pregnancy
        2. Mode of delivery
        3. Breastfeeding
        4. Antibiotic exposure
        5. Diet
        6. Lifestyle

        These topics will be covered more in part II of this blog…

        So make sure you check out part II where you will learn more specifics in how you as a parent or parent to be can maximise this window.

        1. HealthIER at Conception

        The best gift you can give your future children is to be in the best health possible your-self before being pregnant or during pregnancy.

        Fathers-to-be take note as well. A dad’s health at conception plays a role in how healthy that child will be.

        So,

        If you’re wanting to be pregnant soon or you are pregnant now – Be the best health you can be.

        This will be different for everyone as your microbiome was laid down years ago.

        But, all is not lost.

        Health is not all or nothing. There are varying levels of ‘fitness’.  I can be fitter than I am, just like I can eat healthier than I do right now… doesn’t make me not fit or not healthy.

        Become a healthier, (emphasis on health-IER) version of yourself.

        Start today by looking at your diet, or maybe it’s more fresh air and movement you need?

        Small steps count, when becoming healthIER.

        If you’re having five coffee’s a day – try for one less a day.

        Is it easy to add in a vegetable or two for breakfast?

        Snack on fruit rather than the bakery twice a week.

        Invest in a fun drink bottle and leave that in your car or at your desk, to help your drink more water

        Find one small thing you can do today or this week and start there. Once that is down as your new habit… choose another

        If you’re relatively healthy, do yourself a favour and introduce foods that will be good for your gut…

        Pre-biotic and Pro-biotic foods

        Download mazing-microbiome-foods list and eat foods which will help you to get your gut in a better shape… This will be helping your baby or baby-to-be.

         

        Also, make sure you are eating plenty of insoluble-fibre rich foods:

        The easiest way is to base your meals around vegetables… all meals, even breakfast.

        Don’t go past making small changes. They add up.

        Again, to let it sink in…

        What is one step can you do today to become healthier?

        2. HealthIER During Pregnancy

        “You can eat what you want your pregnant”.

        Over four pregnancies this has been said to me too many times to count

        If you concentrate just on weight, I can see how one could think this.

        But, health is more than weight.. Especially when pregnant.

        If you are pregnant or will be in the future, think of pregnancy as the one time when what you eat will play a HUGE role in your little-one-to-be health at birth and health when they are an adult.

        So, if you are pregnant right now become a healthIER version of yourself day by day.  Even if it is getting more fresh air. Your baby’s health will benefit enormously.

         

        3. Mode of Delivery

        Nature didn’t get it wrong.

        When a baby comes down the birth canal they get a huge dose of beneficial bacteria. From both the birth canal and the door next to the birth canal.

        The differences in the microbiome of infants born via C-section v’s birth canals is huge.

        So, if you are going to choose, the best start is coming down the tunnel nature intended.

        However.

        Sometimes you don’t get to choose.

        Or, sometimes a previous birth has left you in a state of shock when thinking about labour and a C-section feels like the safest option.

        If you are planning a C-Section or have to have one after being in labour… this happens, the best thing you can do is ‘Seed’ your baby.  This requires taking swabs from your vagina and rubbing in on your baby’s skin.

        Sounds gross.

        But, get your head around it.

        It will help your baby and their future health.

        As part of your birth plan make sure your midwife, partner and or doctor knows that you want this done.

        A heads-up.  This is relatively new, so don’t expect your doctor or midwife to know about Seeding. It may be your job to help teach them how ‘beneficial’ it is.

         

        4. Breastfeeding

        Imagine…

        Stumbling on an elixir that would guarantee better life-long health. You would drink it, right? You would possibly cross over the mountains to get it?

        Exclusively breastfeeding for 6months is that elixir for babies.

        Breastmilk is teaming with HMO; Human Milk Oligosaccharides. These little gems cannot be replicated by science and are essential to providing your little one with a healthy start to their beneficial bacteria and gut health.

        HMO are not digested by your baby, they are digested by your little one’s bacteria.  HMO feed their beneficial bacteria.

        Breastmilk is the only food specifically designed for your baby’s growth and development.

         

        5. Antibiotics

        Imagine,

        A luscious, dense Amazon Rain-Forrest – teaming with life.

        Now, image

        That same Rain-Forrest just destroyed by a fire.

        This is what antibiotics do.

        Antibiotics, the microbiome destroyer. Antibiotics mean against life and it’s not just the bad bacteria they kill.

        In this time right now – if your pregnant, just had a baby or have a toddler, taking or giving your little one antibiotics will change the landscape of their gut. The effects last for years. Like the re-generation after a fire in the Amazon.

        Even longer, if you are in the time when their gut or ecosystem is developing.

        It seems senseless to me to destroy this crucial balance when your little one has an ear infection that ‘may’ be caused by bacteria.

        Always question your doctor about giving antibiotics.  Yes, they are life-saving.. but quite often they are given when a baby’s life is not on the brink.

        As of writing this, I have not had antibiotics in 15 years and 10 into parenting – none of my children have ever had any antibiotics.

        Antibiotics are overprescribed and unfortunately their effects last years – maybe even a lifetime.

         

        6. Diet

        Are you pregnant, or breastfeeding or is your little one under 3?  The food you and your little one is eating is seeding their gut right now.

        What can you do?

        If your Pregnant or breastfeeding…

        Increase your prebiotic & probiotic foods as well as fibre from vegetables.   Download mazing-microbiome-foods list if you have not already and incorporate more of these foods into your diet.

         

        Is your Baby is 9 months or younger?

        If you have just started your little one on solids or will do soon? Sign up for F.I.R.S.T foods email course. F in F.I.R.S.T foods is Feeding Beneficial bacteria.

         

        Is you Baby is 1-3 years old?

        If you have a young one right now, diet is important and there are two key areas in good beneficial bacteria boosting foods:

        • Probiotics: teaching your kids to love fermented foods such as sauerkraut is huge. To help my kids accept this food as a ‘normal’ food, we played the ‘who can keep a straight face’ (no screwed up sour faces) when eating sauerkraut. If you are new to fermented foods, you train your taste buds for it too.
        • Prebiotics and Fibre: Meaning vegetables, vegetable and more vegetables.

         

        If you’re struggling with getting your kids to eat any sort of vegetables you may have to read Healthy Little Eaters first. Start with their relationship to food first, so they love eating healthy food.

         

        This will not only seed their beneficial bacteria, maximizing this window…

        But, will keep them healthy.

         

        7. Lifestyle

        I can still feel the angst in my heart when I think about going to that playgroup

        I was living in Canada.

        Once a week I would take Rocket and Eckhart who were 2 ½ years old and 8 months at that time to a playgroup.

        Walking in we were directed to the line where all kids, parents and babies had to wash their hand with antibacterial soap.

        If your child popped outside to play when they came back inside.

        Back in line. Washing hands.

        Before snack.

        Bank in line. Washing hands.

        After a snack.

        Back in line. Washing hands.

        Oh, and if Eckhart, put a toy remotely close to her mouth, it would go into a big bucket to be sterilised.

        Yes, then I would be…

        You guessed it.

        Back in line. Washing hands.

        Becoming so preoccupied with bad bacteria aka germs, we have lost the perspective of why we are keeping clean for.

        For health.

        Why a dirty baby, maybe a Healthier baby.?

        Dirt may be a good thing when it comes to life-long health.

        Babies who have a pet at home or were raised on a farm and able to dig in the dirt, possible eating a spoon or two have a different bacteria than those who were raised with everything that was spick-n-span with no germs allowed.

        And, they are healthier.

        Stop waging war on bacteria

        Yes, they can make your child sick,

        But, bacteria can also make your child healthy.

        It’s all a balance

        Let your little ones play in the garden dirt or sand at a beach, if they get some in their mouths… no worries.

        Teach them to wash their hands after using the toilet.

        If your baby has a pacifier, instead of ‘sterilizing’ it, suck it.  This helps seed their gut.

        Use your ‘gut instinct’ when allowing them to get dirty.

        Want to raise an Adventurous Eaters?

        Get 10 bite-sized easy to digest emails and discover the foundations to Adventurous Eaters.

         
        Start my free course
        Maximise this ‘window’ your baby or young one is going through.

        The time when you are pregnant plus their first 1,000 days is when your little one’s microbiome is developing reaching maturity around 3years of age.

         

        Overview of Baby Health Tips

        • You and your partner be the healthiest version of yourself, before trying for a baby.
        • Aim to be HealthIER one day at a time when pregnant & or breastfeeding,
        • Have a back-up of ‘Seeding’ if you end up having a C-Section
        • Make breastfeeding a priority
        • Feed beneficial bacteria in your baby’s first foods
        • Teach your toddler to love fermented foods and pre-biotic foods
        • Take antibiotics only when absolutely needed
        • Let your baby get dirty

        Want to raise an Adventurous Eaters?

        Get 10 bite-sized easy to digest emails and discover the foundations to Adventurous Eaters.

         
        Start my free course

        HEALTH TIPS FOR BABY

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