As summer winds down, parents and kids start turning their attention to school. During all those back-to-school preparations, did you remember to prepare your child’s immune system? Fall is also the start of the regular cold & flu season, and all the sniffling, sneezing, and coughing that goes with it. All these things can put our immune systems to the test, but there are things you can do to enhance your body’s immune response.
Off to a Strong Start
It’s important to remember that a child’s immune system is still developing and is not the same as an adult’s. The immune system strengthens over time. During the first few months of life, an infant relies partly on the mother’s antibodies. We see that babies often get infections that are uncommon in adults and can react differently to vaccines. It isn’t until a child is about five years old that they are able to make effective antibodies against certain antigens. A child’s immune system won’t resemble an adult’s until he or she reaches puberty.
That’s why it’s so important to teach our kids good habits now that support their developing immune systems and overall health.
- Eating well (fresh, whole foods including fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, lean proteins, and unprocessed whole grains)
- Limiting added sugar
- Getting enough quality sleep (10-14 hours depending on age)
- Having time to reduce stress through rest, play and being outside in nature (stress affects kids, too)
- Taking supplements to fill any nutrient gaps
Feed Your Infection Fighters
Nutrition and the immune system are closely linked. Poor nutrition can lead to immune deficiencies. When we aren’t getting adequate nutrients, we’re leaving ourselves vulnerable to infections and diseases. Reliv Now® for Kids with LunaRich® contains many nutrients research shows play a key role in healthy immune function. These include:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin B-6
- Folic Acid
- Vitamin B-12
- Omega-3 fatty acids
Lunasin Supports Immunity
Because it works at the epigenetic level — at the very root of gene expression and cellular function — lunasin impacts multiple aspects of human health, including innate immunity.
Immune cells in your body contain receptors that are genetically primed to respond to germs and other environmental toxins and remove them. If these receptors are slow to respond in your immune cells, your body’s innate defenses do not function properly.
The peer-reviewed medical journal Vaccine published a study on lunasin at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. The study found that lunasin enhanced the body’s response to vaccine antigens, making the vaccine more effective. Lunasin stimulated innate immune cells by regulating the expression of genes that are important to certain immune responses. (Click here to read the abstract.)
A Note from Dr. Galvez: Healthy from the Start
Reliv’s Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Alfredo Galvez, further explains the significance of this research, “This study is the first to demonstrate the ability of lunasin to turn on the genes associated with the immune response, both for innate immunity, our first line of defense against infection, as well as adaptive immunity, which is the ability for the body to produce antibodies that prevent future infections. This is important research in light of novel viruses and infections.”
Dr. Galvez adds that this research is even more relevant today when combined with our understanding of epigenetics, “Epigenetics provides new research opportunities to find and develop more effective treatments and vaccines. But, there is also a practical application for individuals because, with the right nutrients, we can strengthen our immune systems to counter pathogens, AND to respond efficiently when vaccines are introduced by teaching our bodies to produce antibodies that can attack novel viruses.”
Nutrition is important throughout our lives, but especially during the developing years of childhood. Sadly, many kids don’t get the nutrition that their body requires for healthy growth and development. Reliv Now for Kids was formulated specifically with these developing years in mind. Essential vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients give growing bodies what they need to thrive, and advanced ingredients boost energy and mental performance. It’s a great way to fill in the nutritional gaps, especially for picky eaters. Stay healthy and enjoy your autumn!
These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. Reliv products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
- What are the differences between the pediatric and adult immune systems? Read more.
- Activation of dendritic cell function by soypeptide lunasin as a novel vaccine adjuvant. Read more.
- Nutrition and Immunity. Read more.