A healthy gut is key to overall health and we all know that heavy, sluggish feeling indicating our digestion is a little (or a lot!) out of balance. In fact, we’ve shared about ways to improve digestion in adults, so you can feel lighter and say adios to a gurgling, unhappy stomach once and for all.
Kids are just as susceptible to poor digestion and if you have children, you know how an upset tummy can ruin their whole day! Of course, the tips for them will differ, because we highly doubt they’ll be keen to sip on some dandelion tea alongside their meal, or take part in some digestion-boosting yoga.
Read along for helpful ways to improve your little one’s gut health through optimizing digestion. We promise, it won’t be much of a challenge!
Give smaller portions
Some kids just don’t know when to stop eating! Especially when they’re presented with a delicious treat (like cake), they’re likely to eat the whole thing. Try giving your child smaller portions at meal times, even if this means more meals or snacks throughout the day. This places less strain on their digestive system and leaves them with boundless energy to go and play!
Don’t give drinks with meals
If giving drinks with meals is currently a part of your meal routine, this may be a little tricky. Drinking water at least 30 minutes before their meals is best to avoid interfering with digestion.
Is your child craving for a drink alongside their meal? Consider a warm fruity tea (you can add some honey for sweetness). Or if they’re picky, offer them a small drink of room temperature water. Did you know: Cold drinks halt digestion!
Provide healthy snacks over sugar
Even though we know kids love sugar, studies have showed that sugar reduces the good bacteria in the gut and contributes to hyperactivity, followed by sluggishness.
Make snack time fun by chopping up veggies or fruit, and allow the kiddos to dip them into some hummus or a nut butter. If you’re feeling a little creative, try some of these healthy paleo kids treats!
Switch out cow’s milk for goat’s milk, or other dairy-free alternatives
In some studies, consumption of cow’s dairy has been linked to inflammation. In fact, many kids are sensitive to the lactose in cow’s milk. Scientifically speaking, the molecules in goat’s milk are smaller, and more readily received and digested as compared to the large particles in cow’s milk.
Of course, dairy-free alternatives are also an excellent option. From oat milk to almond, soy, cashew, and coconut, the options are endless!
Increase fibre-rich fruits and veggies
You want your kids to have a healthy bowel movement at least once a day. Fibre-rich foods will help this process run smoothly! Increase your child’s intake of prunes, pears, mangoes, peas, broccoli and beans, as well as healthy grains and low-sugar, fortified cereals.
If you need to get a little sneaky when preparing your child’s meal, here are some supplement hacks so you can get extra vitamins and minerals into their little bodies!
Include daily probiotics
When it comes to digestion and gut health, probiotics are your child’s best friend. Probiotics are healthy bacteria that help create a friendly environment in your child’s gut by promoting favourable gut flora. This makes it harder for harmful organisms to grow, and work to maintain a healthy digestive system.
Some kid-friendly probiotic-rich foods include: kefir, pickles, tempeh and kombucha.
Another effective way is incorporating a probiotic supplement. This Kids Probiotic Powder is a fine, tasteless powder that easily mixes into their drink, like juices and smoothies, or simply sprinkled on top of their snack, like apple sauce. If you’re not feeling sneaky, offer them this delicious berry flavoured Probiotic Chewable!
Hope these 6 tips help your kids in naturally improving their gut health! If your child is experiencing any tummy-related issues, consider our Digestion for Kids homeopathic remedy!
Having a hard time opening up their appetite? Do you have a picky eater on your hands? Try this safe and gentle homeopathic remedy, Appetite for Kids!