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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How to boost the immune system of my 20 month old son?

    My 2 year old son seems to be picking up all sorts of germs and sickness from day care. I've started to give him freshly squeezed orange juice each morning. Is there anything else i can do to boost his immune system?
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  • Nicole Senior

    Dietitian, Nutritionist

    I'm an Accredited Practising Dietitian and Nutritionist, consultant, author, speaker and food and health enthusiast. I love talking and writing about food and health.(please note, ... View Profile

    Your expereince is a common one and a result of your son being exposed to many new viruses his body has not seen before and therefore has not yet developed antibodies too. On the upside, each time he gets sick he is is developing a growing armoury of antiobodies so he won't get sick the next time he encounters the same virus. Much of children's immunity to illness is aquired through the slings and arrows of lots of minor illnesses! And then of course vaccinations are additional weapons in the armoury. Talk to your doctor about seasonal flu vaccinations. Nutritionally speaking you can ensure his defences are well supported with a balanced diet with foods from all of the food groups: Grains, vegetables & legumes, fruit, dairy products, meat/chicken/fish/legumes/nuts, and healthy oils. Probiotics (beneficial bacteria that help the gut) may assist so yoghurt with active cultures are worth offering regularly.

  • 1

    Thanks

    Amanda Clark

    Dietitian, Nutritionist

    Amanda Clark (Adv APD) is a senior dietitian at Great Ideas in Nutrition on the Gold Coast. She is the creator of Portion Perfection, a ... View Profile

    In addition to Nicole's great advice to improve immunity, the main source of infection is the hands transporting germs to the mouth, nose or eyes. Wash their hands regularly - definately before eating and discourage your child from touching their face in a habitual way eg. sucking their thumb.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the replies! Nicole he has one vaalia yoghurt a day however I've recently put him on a probiotic as he was on antibiotics. He eats lots of fruit, however veggies are still a challenge for us :) Amanda interesting what you say about thumb sucking!!! He is a thumb sucker, however I will make more of an effort to clean his hands before eating. Thanks again!

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