Back to School

September 2018

By Christine Cheng, R.Ph. and Fred Cheng, R.Ph.

It’s that time of year when we start preparing for back to school. We’re so busy worrying about crayons and notepads, textbooks and electronics, shoes and sports equipment, most of us don’t think about preparing our children’s bodies for the biological challenges. What is the use of all of these school supplies if our kids are not getting the most out of their education?  Let’s chat about what we can do to boost their health.

One of the last things a parent wants to think about on the first day of school is their child catching every bug that circulates through the student body! If they’re not at school because they’re too sick to go, they’re not learning! Probiotics, vitamin D, and vitamin C are top picks for immune support. Probiotics have beneficial effects on human health via several mechanisms including “boosting” the immunity. Taking probiotics on a regular basis can reduce the number of upper respiratory tract infections (URTs) experienced as well as shorten the duration of symptoms of URTs. HMF FIT FOR SCHOOL combines clinically studied strains of probiotics as well as vitamin C and vitamin D for added immune support. This comes in a tasty blackcurrant-flavoured tablet that is safe for use in children 4 years and older.

What can we do if the kids do catch something? For many years, our families have counted on ESBERITOX® taken right at the start of a scratchy throat. Two species of Echinacea are combined with the immune-enhancing benefits of Thuja and Baptisia for a synergistic effect that is greater than the sum of its parts. Esberitox is safe for children as young as 4 years old. If the diagnosis could be the flu, consider adding on SAMBUCUS, a potent formulation of European Elderberry, which has been shown to have anti-viral activity against multiple strains. For those particularly tenacious URTs that hang around for weeks, we have found PREVAIL by PURICA to be effective at getting us on the road to health. The children’s version is safe for those 3 years of age and older.

Nourishing their developing brains is another consideration. Docosahexanoic acid (DHA) is the predominant Omega 3 fatty acid found in the brain. DHA can affect neurological functions such as modulating signal transduction pathways, myelination of the neurons, and synaptic plasticity. Studies show that it could take 4-6 months for blood levels of DHA to reach steady state levels so patience is necessary while we wait to see the benefits of supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids.

For those older students who spend a significant amount of time in front of a computer screen, supplements to protect their eyes against strain and the detriments of blue light exposure. OCU-BLUE from Prairie Naturals promotes healthy eyes and vision by reducing free radical strain, filtering out blue light, and reducing cell damage.

Encourage your children to eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly. Consider supplements for an extra boost and as always, check with your doctor or healthcare practitioner before starting any supplement to ensure its safe use.

Christine and Fred Cheng are a passionate, charismatic sister-brother pharmacist team at their unique, family-owned and operated Pharmasave stores in Cloverdale and Steveston, B.C. They specialize in natural remedies and compounding for both human and veterinarian use. Everything mentioned in their article is available InStore. 

***All information posted and shared by Cloverdale Pharmasave is offered to provide information and choices regarding nutritional support for various health concerns, none of which is intended to be a treatment protocol for any disease state. The information does not replace seeking professional advice from your physician. Consult your health care practitioner before taking dietary supplements.

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