This post gives an outline of how to support and boost your family’s immune system all year long. I share my favorite natural immune boosters to support your family’s health as well as some of my top tips for staying healthy.
As a mom to 7 little ones (soon to be 8), I know how it feels to be overwhelmed at the thought of keeping immune systems healthy. Many years ago we had a winter where we were sick for what felt like months at a time. It was one thing after the other because our immune systems weren’t at their peak. That winter was the turning point for me as a mother in learning more about our immune systems.
I am by no means an expert and this is not any sort of medical advice. This post is truly just what has worked well for our family over the years. I’ll be sharing our favorite daily supplements (this is not a sponsored post) as well as different things that we do throughout the year to do our best to stay healthy.
It’s inevitable that we will get sick, that’s just the world we live in. But I am big believer in the following steps to building and supporting strong immune systems.
FOCUS ON PLENTY OF SLEEP
Sleep is one of the best things that you can do to boost your family’s immune systems. I have found that when we begin to run on little sleep, our bodies tend to get sick a lot easier. We are big fans of making sure our children are able to get as much sleep as they need.
In our home we focus on the kids getting 10-12 hours of a sleep a night in addition to afternoon naps for our younger children. As adults we are focusing on making sure that we are getting to bed on time and getting a minimum of 8 hours of sleep a night (easier said than done…right?!).
EAT IMMUNE BOOSTING FOODS
Taking supplements and vitamins is a great way to assist in the boosting of your immune system, but it’s a bit pointless in my opinion if your diet isn’t filled with nourishing and healthy foods. We focus on eating super foods throughout the week that are packed with vitamins and nutrients.
A few of the foods we eat throughout a typical week:
- Salmon: we have salmon once a week in our home. It’s loaded with Omega 3 and protein. I’ll typically drizzle it with avocado oil (or olive oil) and add fresh herbs and lemon to the top.
- Kale: full of Vitamins A and K. This is great chopped up finely into soups or salads.
- Spinach: another heavy hitting veggie. Loaded with Vitamins A, K, C and E. And also lots of zinc. My kids aren’t a huge fan of spinach, so I’ll typically add it to a smoothie or to a fresh squeezed juice.
- Broccoli: we will roast broccoli at least once a week with avocado oil, fresh chopped garlic (great for boosting immunity), salt and pepper.
- Spiraluna: I will add dried spiraluna powder to smoothies at least once a week. It’s packed with immune boosting vitamins and is an easy add on.
- Blueberries: these little guys are packed with Vitamin C and Vitamin K. The kids will eat them as a snack or we’ll add them into smoothies.
- Greek Unsweetened Yogurt: we have yogurt parfaits once a week with Greek Unsweetened Yogurt. It’s full of probiotics which are great for the digestive tract. We’ll sweeten it with a drizzle of local honey and add in fresh fruit and granola.
- Bone Broth: bone broth is an excellent way to help boost immunity. Bone broth helps to coat the gut with collagen, which in turn helps to keep your immune system boosted. You can make your own or you can also purchase quality bone broth from your local grocer. This is an excellent one.
- Eggs: we’re very grateful for our farm chickens and eat eggs several mornings a week. The eggs are nutrient rich with vitamins.
- Lentils: we love lentils in our home! They make an excellent side dish and a powerhouse of nutrition. They’re loaded with zinc and vitamin K (and a multitude of other vitamins).
- Chia Seeds: Chia seeds are high in antioxidants and are an easy way to sprinkle in extra vitamins to your family’s food. We love mixing them into smoothies, baked goods and also turning them into pudding.
HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE
We drink a lot of water in our home! Keeping everyone hydrated is a huge component in supporting our immune systems. Recently we set up a water station down lower with our beloved Berkey and water bottles. Our kids each have an assigned water bottle and can fill it up throughout the day.
You can read more about our Berkey water filter and why I love it here.
KEEPING SUGAR INTAKE TO A MINIMUM
This is something that I have been working hard on switching over this past year. Refined sugar in a diet can wreak havoc on an immune system. And turns out sugar is in everything!
We try to focus on keeping healthy snacks on hand that are low in sugar (ideally no sugar at all!). We do love a baked treat in our home, so I have tried to be mindful of how many baked treats we are making in a week. Baby steps!
VITAMINS AND SUPPLEMENTS
In addition to all the tips above, we also take daily vitamins and supplements starting in the fall. Below I share our favorite kid vitamins, vitamins to boost your immune system, prenatal vitamins, additional supplements and also our elderberry syrup recipe.
This is what the morning vitamin line up usually looks like (plus a few more!).
VITAMINS AND SUPPLEMENTS FOR THE FAMILY
Everyone in our house takes the same vitamins and supplements except for me. Right now I am taking a few different things for prenatal care (at the time of this post I am 22 weeks pregnant).
Every morning I will set out a row of shot glasses and fill them accordingly with our liquid vitamins and supplements. I prefer using liquid vitamins and supplements for a few reasons. The first is that I am able to stretch the cost of them out a little bit more than a chewable supplement or vitamin. The second reason is that liquid vitamins are easier for the body to absorb.
I will fill each shot glass with:Elderberry Syrup: typically I have my homemade Elderberry Syrup on hand. On days where I am out, I’ll use the Elderberry Syrup pictured below. You can find my Elderberry Syrup recipe here. Elderberry Syrup is excellent for immune support and is loaded with Vitamin A and Vitamin C.
Liquid Morning Multivitamin: we love MaryRuth’s Liquid Morning Multivitamin! It’s a blend of B vitamins, Vitamin C, Vitamin D and Vitamin E (all excellent for immunity boosting).
Ionic Zinc- Zinc is an essential mineral that also plays a role in your bodies immune system.
Vitamin C Liposomal: Vitamin C Liposomal is an amazing product that delivers the Vitamin C to your body through liposomal technology. Liposomes are tiny spherical structures, with a protective outer layer and an inner cavity, to hold and transport substances such as vitamins to the body. This supplement encapsulates Vitamin C for enhanced absorption. I highly recommend adding it to your line up.
Liquid Probiotic: there are a lot of amazing probiotics out there. I love being able to add this one to our shot glasses each morning. It is formulated with 12 probiotic strains to support your gut health and the immune system.
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HOMEMADE ELDERBERRY SYRUP
You can find my Homemade Elderberry Syrup recipe HERE. I have been making it for years and it’s a super cost effective way to boost your family’s immune systems.
PRENATAL VITAMINS AND SUPPLEMENTS
I am currently 22 weeks pregnant with our 8th little one. For the most part I take the same supplements as the rest of my family. The two prenatal products that I take are:
- Probiotic Prenatals: I love these probiotics because they’re not only loaded with probiotics, but also a few other vitamins, minerals and botanicals that are excellent for a baby’s nutrient needs. A few of my favorites that are included are Vitamins D3 and B12, Ginger and Red Raspberry Leaf.
- Prenatal and Postnatal Liquid Vitamin: a lot of prenatal vitamins have upset my stomach in the past, but this one doesn’t!
ON THE GO IMMUNE BOOSTING VITAMINS
If we are traveling or need to get out the door quickly, I’ll give the kids these chewable vitamins instead of the liquid vitamins. They’re delicious and my kids love them!
- Immunity Gummies: they’re an amazing blend of zinc, elderberry, vitamin C and Echinacea!
- Kids Multivitamin Gummies: these are super delicious and come in a variety of flavors. They’re loaded with Vitamins A, C D3, E, and B just to name a few. They also have Zinc which is excellent for immune function.
ESSENTIAL OILS AND NATURAL CLEANING PRODUCTS
We have been using essential oils for boosting our immunity for a few years. We currently use Doterra essential oils and I love them! Below are the three On Guard products that we use daily.
- On Guard Essential Oil: I have this diffusing in our home and in my car most days. It’s a great blend that is fantastic for immune support. It’s a cozy scent that has Wild Orange, Clove Bud, Cinnamon Leaf, Cinnamon Bark, Eucalyptus Leaf, and Rosemary Leaf.
- On Guard Touch: you can definitely mix up your own roller bottle of On Guard, but I love having a few premade roller bottles on hand. We roll it on our feet and chest each night before bed or before we head to public places where there are more outside germs.
- On Guard Cleaner Concentrate: this is the only cleaning product I keep in our home. I absolutely LOVE it! I mix up bottles of it to keep around our home. I never have to worry about little hands getting into poison. When my kids use it to clean it’s also helping to boost their immune system. A win win!
Below you’ll find my favorite essential oil diffusers that we use around the house (including this one!).