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Get an A+ in health with these Back-to-School tips


It’s after Labor Day and we all know what that means, summer is winding down and the kids are heading back to school, and moms and dads everywhere are doing their happy dance. The one thing we are dreading is the sleepy kiddos as the long days take a toll on their minds and body. We are also patiently anticipating the round of runny noses, sneezing and coughing we see the kids bring home from school.

It’s unavoidable to miss all of the germs that the kids bring back from summer break and share with each other while in close proximity in the classroom. But, it’s important to be prepared so the germs don’t hit your kids, parents and teachers too hard.

Pump up your immunity:

One of the simplest ways to fight germs is to have your immune system prepared. Have your kids, and you, take a few key supplements and foods to help improve your immune system function.

Vitamin C — Time to stock up on oranges and other vitamin C packed fruits and veggies like pineapple and mango. Even cauliflower, broccoli and kale pack as much or more vitamin C as an orange.

Echinacea — You don’t need to take Echinacea year round, but back to school time is a great time to take some. A simple way to prep your immune system is to take 500-1,000mg per day for about two weeks.

Omega 3 — Omega 3 fatty acids are very beneficial for your overall health as well as your immune system. This is a great daily supplement to be taking because our bodies do not produce Omega 3 and must been consumed from our foods or supplements.

Keep your supplies clean:

As great as it is to encourage kids to share, we need to make sure if one kid is under the weather they aren’t also sharing their cold. Parents need to make sure they know what to share and not to share. Make sure you wipe down backpacks, lunch pails and school supplies. Remind your kids not to share lip balms, ear buds or other personal items.

Sleep and Stress:

Back to school can be a big stress for not only parents but students too. Make sure you are taking time each day to talk to your kid about how school is going and if they are struggling in any area.

Sleep is also very important. Going from staying up late on summer nights to waking up early to catch the bus can wear kids, and their immune systems, down. It’s recommended that school aged kids get anywhere from 9-12 hours of sleep per night. If your child needs to wake up at 6 a.m. to catch a school bus on time, they need to be going to bed around 8 p.m. If this is not feasible, consider cutting back on after-school activities and getting into a good evening routine with your kids.

Have a Happy and Healthy Back to School season.

Emily Countryman is a board certified health coach and owner of Ideal Wellness located at 2639 172nd St. NE Suite 104 in Smokey Point/Marysville She can be reached online at


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