This is a continuation from the previous posts – Ways to Navigate Your Family Toward Wellness – Steps 1 and 2, Further Ways to Navigate Your Family Toward Wellness – Steps 3 and 4 and Steps 5 and 6. In these blogs we have discussed:
STEP 1 – Examine the Family’s Current Health Philosophy.
STEP 2 – Move Towards STRENGTHENING Health Rather Than Looking For Alternatives For Sick Care where we discussed if we utilise naturopathy, Chinese medicine or homeopathy for example (which are wonderful resources discussed in step 3) as a therapy or treatment for an ailment or as an alternative to antibiotic, then we are acting too late.
STEP 3 – Take a Multi-faceted Allied Health Care Approach
STEP 4-Teach Your Children about Innate Intelligence
STEP 5-Look at Where You Currently Spend Your Money?
STEP 6 – Buy Quality Foods Where-ever Possible
Let’s continue to look at further ways to Navigate Wellness…
Step 7 – Create a Health Investment Cupboard
The “traditional medicine cupboard” is deeply engrained for many people. An important distinction for a family motivated to move towards wellness is that it is important to realise we need to consistently invest in our health and not just focus on rebuilding health when we are unwell. In Step 2 we discussed moving towards strengthening health rather than looking for alternatives for sick care, this involves proactive investments such as chiropractic ‘wellness’ adjustments which free the nervous system of interference and promote well-being and vitality.
If illness arises, families focused on health and well-being will utilise the skill of holistic practitioners such as Chinese medicine practitioners, naturopaths etc and tend to replace the traditional medicine cupboard with a Health Investment Cupboard and/or section of the fridge that is filled with some of the following items which may be used only intermittently or frequently depending upon the need.
The Health Investment Cupboard:
- a Homeopathic Kit
- Rescue Remedy
- Vitamin C Powder
- Vitamin chewable tablets
- Homeopathic Lolly pops
- Tea Tree Oil
- Hydrogen Peroxide
- Calcium Magnesium Powder
- Zinc Powder
- Olive Leaf Extract
- High Quality Fish or Marine Oil or capsules
A section of the fridge may be filled with:
- Flaxseed Oil
Step 8 – Prioritise Regular Sweaty Exercise
An extremely valuable tool for children, are parents who consistently model fitness. Children learn that exercise is important if they see their parents regularly prioritise time to work out physically, in fact studies indicate children are more likely to exercise themselves if they witness both parents partaking in vigorous exercise.
From an early age encourage your children to go on walks with you (yes this may be time consuming but the long-term habitual training will outweigh the current “whining or moaning“), as they mature put them in charge of walking the dog everyday, and make a family commitment to weekend exercise such as bike rides.
It is also fun to get into the habit of playing vigorous “hide-and seek-chase” and “tiggy” as a family. Not only can family exercise be fun but children who physically exercise tend to sleep better and are much less cantankerous.
Exercise can take many forms. We decided recently to forfeit our family walk for some vigorous weekend gardening and together we managed to shovel two enormous piles of compost mulch onto the garden. This was not without episodes of arguing and tears intermingled with laughter and hysterics all sparked by the question,“So boys, why do you think we have to mulch and feed the garden ?” To which they all philsophised and argued – it was quite hilarious really!
We also have a family agreement that exercise (such as running around the block, the park or on the treadmill) has to be completed before anyone is allowed to sit and use computers or the X -Box! Guess who’s idea that was? We have a motto “the family who exercises together doesn’t grow fat together!”
STEP 9 – Create a Kids Snack Draw in the Fridge and in the Cupboard.
Sometimes everything seems to happen at once. Children will often want a snack just as the phone rings, or as someone rings the door bell. To avoid low blood sugar melt downs with children, it can be wise to create a special shelf or draw with food that your are happy for them to eat and that they can access themselves. This way when you can’t get off the phone quickly, you can give your child a ‘thumbs up’ as they grab a mandarin from the fridge.
Healthy Snack Items Kids Can Grab from the Fridge, Fruit Bowl, Freezer:
- Long celery sticks (just cut the ends off)
- Carrots, Cucumbers, Avocado’s
- Apples, Mandarins, Stone fruit, Grapes – leave bananas for the fruit bowl
- For older children you could have Home made Sushi ready to go (‘susheze’ are a fabulous invention!), soup they could reheat or frozen berries or mango’s they could use to make smoothies.
Healthy Snack Items Kids Can Grab from the Pantry may include:
- A handful of raw nuts
- A handful of dried fruits
- A healthy muesli bar
- Homemade muffins, cakes, slices
- A handful of rice crackers or rice cakes
- A tin of fish in spring water
Another great nutritional step is to decrease the amount of “white flour” food items available in the house.
Step 10- Teach, Coach and Inspire
All of the steps we have discussed are imperative when moving towards wellness, yet above all when it comes to raising robust, vital children we need to keep ourselves, their guardians, motivated and inspired. It is therefore imperative that we have access to various associations, websites, books, like- minded people and wellness oriented health practitioners who inspire us. Another key element is to keep abreast of the latest topical health issues and to remember to ask good questions, as knowledge is power.
Just as we are responsible for our own health, we are also responsible for engraining in our children wholesome health principles. We need to remember that we are constantly teaching, coaching and inspiring them and we need a loving, positive home environment that encourages the emotional and physical health of our children.
I encourage you to make your primary objective to teach your children that health is determined by how much we appreciate and respect our amazing bodies. It is determined by the proactive investments we make in strengthening our health, not simply when we are unwell and how we eat and how much we move.
A wellness chiropractor can help guide your family today.
If you haven’t already read them, the other posts in this series are…
Further Ways To Navigate Your Family Towards Wellness – Steps 1 & 2
Further Ways To Navigate Your Family Towards Wellness – Steps 3 & 4
Further Ways To Navigate Your Family Towards Wellness – Steps 5 & 6