You are born into this world fresh, new, but have been given a random assortment of genetics that could either be in your favour, or against you. The second thing that is out of your control is how healthy your mom was when you became conceived. While it is true that a baby will "take what it needs" from the mother when developing in the womb, it is still very limited to how healthy she was in the first place. If the mother does not have anything to give her newly growing babe, then it is hard to be born earthside ahead of the game when it comes to health and trust me, as a species we need to start getting ahead of the game!
Right now illness is on a rise in all forms. The National Cancer Institute states that cancer is increasing and 34.8% of people will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives. Not to mention every other disease or illness available to us. Additionally, mental illness has been increasing, with over 20% of the population in North America suffering from it (which by the way is becoming substantially higher in youth). The Pediatric Academic Societies conducted a study and the youth that have been admitted to hospitals for attempted suicide (or suicidal thoughts) has more than doubled in the last 10 years. Personally, to me this is a call to step up, take responsibility and adapt to the world I live in now before I get left behind.
Not only that, I want my children to thrive. One way I can go about doing this is by understanding my own health as well as how it works in children ***which by the way are two completely separate things! Additionally, another great way to help your child is to understand the signs and symptoms of early dis-ease and disfunction in the body.
You as the parent, have a direct correlation to your childs health in regards to what they are eating and how they are feeling. While some children can have obvious signs of ailment like reoccurring illness, bad eczema, rashes, irritable bowls, constipation etc., other children who do not show the "obvious" issues, are still being affected. In Chinese Medicine, any child under the age of 6 should be treated as though they have a compromised immune system, which in other words means they do not have an adult stomach and shouldn't eat adult things.
If you were sick, or in the aging population, for optimal health you would want to follow a diet that allowed for an increase to the immune system by limiting processed foods, sugars, artificial flavours, white.. everything and quick to grab and go snacks. Yet, this is what a majority of children under the age of 6 are being fed these days. It is unfair for us to expect a child to grow into a healthy adult with abundant energy and mental clarity if we are not setting them up for success.
Lets pause for a moment while I ask you an honest question?? How do you feel right now? What is your energy level from the moment you wake up to the time you go to bed? How are your moods? What fuels you?? Food ?? Caffeine?
This is not to make anyone feel bad as a parent. I understand the struggles of having a child who defiantly does not want to eat something, and I too was a defiant child who did not want to eat anything; but because of that my health suffered and it has taken me years to try and recoup from the things my parents either didn't know, or didn't have the patience and time to teach me on. I don't blame them what-so-ever but you can bet I am breaking the pattern, and not allowing it to continue on any further down the generational line. This is why I pray that you do not give up on your child's health. Every little thing counts for them and you.
Look out for them! Some signs and symptoms of children who often slip through the health cracks are ear infections, stomach aches, congestion, headaches, runny nose, slight redness to the face, adhd, coughing amongst other things. If you are not watching closely, it will pass you by due to their lack of communication. Take the baby below as an example. I have seen numerous amounts of children with these cheeks - be aware, it can be their bodies trying to tell you that it does not like something!
Communication is about more than just words. It is about understanding our bodies and listening to our soul as well as being patient, loving and kind with what is has to say. This takes a practice that starts within ourselves before we can focus on others, but is oh so important to do.
What we do not transcend we transfer to our future generations. You may not have grown up in a healthy household, or know exactly where to start and what to do.. but let me tell you that today needs to be the day that you make a change and start transcending past those old blocks and false beliefs so that you can move forward in a healthy way- if not for yourself, for your children.
Part 2 of this blog will be written to focus on the how along with tips and tricks for ways to benefit your childs health moving forward! So keep on the look out! Please like, or share the message if you agree. We need to be on the collective path towards healing old wounds so we can create a better world. BE-THE-CHANGE.
Follow along on instagram @inwardtoithaka if you want to learn more. I will be uploading recipes for kids and focusing on post partum health over the next month to come - most of all - reach out should you have any questions! Don't be shy and join the #ithakatribe as we evolve and teach ourselves a new way of loving and living. XO - All my love.