How can we build a stronger, healthier and a more immune India?
Book definition for Immunity: “The state of having sufficient biological defenses to avoid infection, disease, or other unwanted biological invasion.”
My definition for ‘Immunity’: An ability to reserve all the annual leaves for planned vacations and lazy days instead of wasting it on sick days.
‘Immunity’ was once a fancy word but today most parents talk about it, realize the importance of improving the immunity of their kids. This doesn’t mean that peoples’ awareness about immunity has gone high. It simply means that the need to throw some light and focus on immunity has emerged; not something to feel really happy about.
There were days when fever was just a common sickness; one student would take maximum of five days a year as leave claiming to have been down with fever. Parents never took any step to cure it other than letting the kid take a day off from school. Today, just like how the variety in food, clothing and lifestyle has increased, the varieties of fever has also drastically increased. ‘SARS they said’; ‘chicken cunnia they said’; ‘Rat fever they said’; ‘Viral Fever they said’; ‘Dingue they said’- parents get scared which kind of fever will affect their kids.
How can we make a stronger, healthier and more immune India?
Step 1: Mobile/ tablets and computer:
The first and foremost step is to stop allowing kids to use mobile phones, tablets and compute games. They start playing it, get addicted and stop going out for playing. Those days kids used to shed at least little bit sweat but now kids save it all to fall sick. Exercise in the form of games can surely increase immunity.
Pizza and Burger have become the three meals of a day for most kids. Parents get busy with work and hardly find time to cook varieties their kids wants. To compensate that, they buy costly junk food for their kids. First, stop getting your kids Pizza, burger too often. Most importantly stop giving kids noodles every day.
You could instead try easy recipes like Aval upma, masala papad, dosa with vegetable toppings and so on. Evening junk snacks can be replaced with fruits and vegetables.
Starting the day with 4 almonds soaked in water over night can increase strength and fight diseases.
A glass of hot water with cinnamon and honey can help you stay fit.
Cook food in a way it becomes a healthy one. This can be done by using herbs and spices.
Cardamom, Cinnamon, clove, turmeric, garlic, mint, pepper and the like can be added in day to day cooking to improve health of the family.
A proper sleep-cycle is the best way to battle a lot of health problems. A person who sleeps just enough everyday can stay healthy life long. A good amount of sleep also reduces stress. Early to bed is something that kids fail to follow. Parents come home late and hence kids stay up till mid night. Night shows, movies at home, games eat their sleeping time. Early morning pollution free fresh air is very good for health, which most kids don’t get to enjoy.
Food that’s not taken when the body needs can cause half the health problems we face. So we need to encourage kids to eat at the right time.
It is a traditional practice to take whole body oil bath once a week. But, today, we skip it saying no time as an excuse. But there are many good health benefits of taking oil bath.
-It cools the body removing the heat from it.
-It removes dirt and is good for skin’s heath. It moisturizes skin.
-It improves appetite.
-It removes redness of eyes that’s caused due to stress
-Reduces blood pressure.
The above are just the few benefits that I am aware of while there are so many other benefits.
The most important step in staying healthy is to be clean and keep it clean. This shouldn’t be a preaching or teaching it must be a part of life style and habit. Kids must practice washing hands and legs the moment hey reach home. Brushing twice a day, bathing at least once a day, washing vessels before using them, not eaten food that falls on the floor are some basics of staying clean and healthy.
From the parent’s side, they must keep the house clean enough for a healthy life. Preventing odor in toilers, cleaning the toilets frequently. Sweeping the house, washing the floors, cleaning the washbasins, washing cook utensils, using boiled or cleaned water are some practices that could improve the health of the family.
Step 8: Prevent Dirty Habits
Kids must be educated with the ill effects of the bad habits they have. Biting nails is one bad habit commonly seen in kids. All the dirt in the nail gets into the body along with the nail. Scolding them does help. We need to educate them how an unwanted cell of the body becomes nail and what happens If they bite nails.
The above steps are simple ones that we can be a part of our day today activity which can improve the health and immunity of the kids.
But seeing the big picture I think we need to stop eradicating the causes that lead to the need of improving immunity. To make a more immune India we need to start from outside one’s body and then reach the interior of the body.
The steps to eradicate the reasons that lead to improving immunity.
Step 1: Reducing carbon foot print
When they say reduce your carbon foot print we never bother to listen. “What is it to us?! We just need luxury.” We say and keep increasing our carbon foot print. But, the each small way we hinder the environment, reflects in our child’s heath.
Step 2: Consider outside equal to inside
But saying ‘consider outside equal to the inside’ I mean consider the roads and public areas equally to your own house. Keep it clean.
-By throwing half eaten food while waiting in the railway station, you are only inviting mosquitoes to spread dingue to your own kid.
-By not watering the public toilets well, you are inviting an infection for your own kid.
Step 3: Stop smoking
Smoking kills you, but that’s fair as you choose to die by smoking yourself. But when you smoke when others are around, especially kids, you are trying to kill your own kid.
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