Indy Style

How to help your family get through the GERMIEST time of the year

Moms, no matter how diligent you are, you can’t supervise what your kids touch, breathe or swallow 24/7. No one knows this better than pharmacist-turned healthy Lifestyle Expert Lisa Leslie-Williams, BS, PharmD.

With more activities moving indoors now that the temperatures are falling, and with cough and cold season upon us, Leslie-Williams is sharing some of her best tips to empower other families to take control over their immune health.

Grab a white board and write your family’s own health and wellness prescription
Post your wellness prescription on the refrigerator or in another high-traffic area where everyone will see it daily. Some things to include on your list are:

  1. Wash your hands. “No splash and dash allowed!” stresses Leslie-Williams. “While some moms teach their kids to sing the ABC or birthday song, instead try putting on some great music and have a fun time.”
  2. Humidify your air. “Dry winter air can crack the skin in our nasal passages, easily enabling viruses and germs to enter the body and make us sick. Buy a humidifier to keep your indoor spaces moist. Be sure to clean it every five to seven days so it doesn’t grow bacteria.”
  3. Juice up your immune system. “Black elderberries provide natural support for the immune system, and can be enjoyed for year-round immune maintenance. But choose the variety that is backed by science. If you buy homemade elderberry tea or jam, it might help someone with their business but you won’t get the same powerful immune support. Sambucol black elderberry comes in multiple forms that will please everyone in the family, from syrup and a drink powder to capsules, pastilles and gummies.”
  4. Clean or change your air filters according to the schedule on the filter packaging. “Also, have your HVAC professionally cleaned at least twice a year to maintain good indoor air quality.”
  5. Teach your children to use their own utensils and water bottles. “Help them keep their germs to themselves by labeling their water bottles so there is no confusion.”

Moms, here’s her advice about self care
“Moms, self-care is not getting your nails done or treating yourself to a double scoop ice cream sundae,” says Leslie-Williams. “Self-care is the foundation for the things that will help us thrive, and help our bodies do what we intended to do. Treat your body the way it should be treated!” That means prioritizing rest, good nutrition and exercise. “Also, don’t skip your health screenings. Stay on top of your health and be a good role model for your family.”

Leslie-Williams says that by following this health and wellness prescription, you are instilling good habits in your children that will serve them throughout their lives. Plus, “When you feel well, you experience more out of life,” she says.

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