Youth Month: It’s time to look after your child’s health

Youth Month: It’s time to look after your child’s health

Children are unable to function to their fullest if their health is not looked after. Find out how you can ensure your child is given the best possible chance at succeeding in life…

Happy children stock image
Jacoblund / iStock

A healthy child is provided with a platform to perform in school and on their journey of discovery.

Robbing a child of their health is akin to putting the brakes on their development.

Therefore, it is so important to ensure that our next generation of leaders is given the chance to thrive.

READ: Top 4 ways to prep for winter health

As it is Youth Month, we are determined to help you instil a mindset of health in your children to ensure that they are able to deal with the challenges they face on the front foot.


We all know how good exercise is for the human body, but for kids, it has a few added benefits which will serve them well for the present and later on in life:

  • Strengthens their muscles and bones, while at the same time keeping their body lean.
  • Lowers the chances of children developing type 2 diabetes and issues with blood pressure and cholesterol later in life.
  • Improves their sleep, aiding their ability to concentrate in school.
  • Has been proven to ward off depression in children.
  • Aids in their ability to deal with physical and emotional challenges such as building friendships, studying or participating in sports.
  • Helps to set a foundation of good health and will ensure they continue to exercise when they become adults.

Going for regular family walks, short runs or performing simple exercises like sit-ups and push-ups will go a long way in ensuring your child is fighting fit for their developmental journey and beyond.

READ: What you need to know about the flu shot


Yes, we know how difficult and frustrating it can be to get your child to eat their vegetables, but the reality is that they are so important to your child's growth and overall health.

We also know how easy it is to feed them processed, high-fat, sugary foods when our busy lives start to catch up with us, but the reality is that we need to limit their intake of the 'bad' stuff and ensure a balanced diet is incorporated into their lives.

Setting a good example is important when it comes to eating, so ensure that you, the parent, eats those veggies too. Your kids will be more inclined to eat veggies if you do. Remember that.

Another great way to help with your child's veggie intake is getting them involved in the kitchen. If they see how food is prepared and you talk to them about the importance of said food, they will start to understand why they need to eat it. Simply trying to force feed them is never going to work and will likely start to play a role in eating issues down the line.

It's also important to make the process fun. Don't just put a boring plate of veggies in front of them if you know they don't like veggies. Try new recipes to make the veggies more appealing or even look at ways to plate the food in exciting and interesting ways. Remember, eating starts with the eyes, so a boring piece of broccoli will be better received if it is made to look appetising.

If you feel that your kids are not eating enough of the good stuff, there are supplements which you can add to their diet to ensure they get what is required for their optimal growth. CLICK HERE for some options.

READ: How to ease the effects of overindulgence


According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 'Immunisation is a global health and development success story, saving millions of lives every year. Vaccines reduce risks of getting a disease by working with your body’s natural defences to build protection. When you get a vaccine, your immune system responds.

'We now have vaccines to prevent more than 20 life-threatening diseases, helping people of all ages live longer, healthier lives. Immunisation currently prevents 3.5 to 5-million deaths every year from diseases like diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, influenza, and measles.'

The South African Department of Health echoes the sentiments of the WHO, saying: 'Immunisation protects young children against potentially life-threatening illnesses such as tuberculosis, polio, hepatitis, and measles. Parents and caregivers, protect your children by making sure that they have all their required vaccinations at the right time.

'Children who have turned one must be taken to a clinic at 18 months for two injections, including the second dose of measles vaccine. Starting in 2014, each year girls who turn nine years of age also receive immunisation against cervical cancer as part of the school health programme. As parents and caregivers, let us protect our children, our future by ensuring that the are fully immunised. Immunisation is the gift for life.'

For more information about where you can get your child vaccinated and for further advice, CLICK HERE.

Disclaimer: Health-related information provided in this article is not a substitute for medical advice and should not be used to diagnose or treat health problems. It is always advisable to consult with your doctor or pharmacist on any health-related issues.

Arrie Nel and Mopani Pharmacy campaign banner
Arrie Nel / Mopani Pharmacy

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