Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Why Digestion is Vital for Your Child to be Healthy

Why digestion is Vital for your child to be healthy.

The digestive system is perhaps the most important organ system of the body.  I would like to share with you why this system is so important and what you can do to ensure your children have a strong and robust digestive system.  A healthy functioning gut is vital to your children growing healthy and remaining healthy throughout their whole lives.  

Lets face it, being a modern day parent can be pretty tough at times especially if our children don’t seem to be thriving as they should.  A healthy child will make your job as a parent that much easier, especially if you can see how they are thriving.  Let me share with you why your child's digestive system is so important.

Key facts about your child’s digestive system
  • It contains more than 500 million nerve cells and more brain cells than the brain itself!
  • Helps regulate nervous system function and equilibrium.
  • Contains over 85% of the body’s immune cells.
  • Has the highest cellular turnover rate in the body - which means it is highly influenced.
  • Manufactures key vitamins and nutrients for the body to use

The digestive system is the central hub to the way your child's brain functions, how their immune system manages threats and their overall nutritional status.

“All Disease begins in the Gut”        -     Hippocrates (2500 years ago)

Here are a few tips that can you use to ensure this system is healthy in your child.

  1. Ensure their diet is free from synthetic, highly refined pseudo-foods.  If your grandmother wouldn’t recognise it as food then don’t feed it to your kids.
  2. Ensure there is natural diversity within the diet.  I tell children in my consulting room that they’re body needs to eat a minimum of 15 different types of food each day.  These must be all colours of the rainbow.
  3. Give your child a minimum of 3 serves of protein per day.  Use varied types including, lean meats, fish, nuts, eggs, legumes, beans & tofu.  Protein will support a robust appetite and ensure lean muscle development.
  4. Use fermented foods in the family diet. These act as pre-biotics which are fuel for your body own flora.  Examples include, Whole Yoghurt, Sauerkraut, Kim Chi, Kafir and Tempeh.
  5. Consult a qualified naturopath to help resolve any ongoing digestive complaints or concerns that may be related to the function of this system.  Naturopathic medicine has excellent tools to support optimal function of the digestive system.

So there you have it a brief outline on why your child’s digestive system is vital to your child's whole health.  Have questions? Then why not gives us a call so we can help.
Tim Howden ND BHSc MNHAA
Paediatric Naturopath