Family Outdoors in Winter

Vital Health Foods – Looking After Your Family This Winter – PLUS Giveaway

Winter has suddenly arrived, bringing the cold weather and the rain that Cape Town so badly needs. As much as I am grateful for the rain, winter is no longer my favourite time of year. Since becoming a mother I dread the winter months that so often result in myself, my husband and my children getting ill.

***Disclosure – This is a sponsored post.***

I remember my first winter as a mother clearly: As the weather started getting a little cooler in Autumn my baby got ill and she spent a week in hospital at 6 months old. My first Mother’s Day was spent in hospital looking after my little girl.

Since then I have placed a lot more emphasis on ensuring my family is healthy and that their immune systems are strong through healthy eating, getting enough exercise and rest, and most importantly, taking the right vitamins.

Vital Health Foods is encouraging all families to stay healthy this winter and not letting colds and flu stop them from living an active lifestyle outdoors. Vital’s amazing winter range of vitamins will keep your family healthy and on the go this winter.

We also love being outdoors and active in winter. There’s nothing worse than being cooped up in a house with two energetic youngsters bouncing off the walls.

This is so important to me as a work from home mother. When anyone in my family gets ill, things get really tricky for me to be able to keep my business and my household running on an even keel.

Below are key ways to stay protected this winter. Don’t miss the awesome give-away sponsored by Vital Health Foods at the bottom of this post.

Vital Health Foods Winter

A more aggressive flu season calls for Vital to care for you

The upcoming flu season is expected to have a major impact on South Africans – more so than in previous years – due to more severe strains of the flu virus appearing globally.

Michelle Jooste, dietitian at Vital Health Foods, says that Vitamin C is one of the best preventative measures to support your immune system during the winter months. Research shows that in adults, supplementing with 1000mg of Vitamin C daily assists in reducing the duration and severity of flu symptoms.“ Food sources like oranges, guavas, tomatoes and green leafy vegetables are high in Vitamin C. However, to consume 1000mg of vitamin C, you would have to eat at least 14 oranges in one sitting,” explains Jooste.

Vital vitamins winter boostEvery year, a large section of the population miss work and school due to a common cold. It is especially bad for children as they could have up to ten colds per year in contrast to adults who only have two to four colds per year.  In addition, pre-schoolers are three times more likely to suffer an infection than those staying at home.

Jooste says that the flu can have a debilitating impact on the health of the whole family, as quite often it only takes one family member to be infected to knock down an entire household.

But, she says that it is possible to stay protected this winter.

“Vital Health Foods is encouraging South Africans to not let the flu stop them from living an active lifestyle outdoors this winter. Ensure that your family is protected by increasing your vitamin intake,” says Jooste.

She suggests three key ways how you can protect your and your family’s health this winter:

1) Take a Vitamin C supplement

Vitamin C goes a long way in strengthening the immune system. A strong immune system is essential to reduce the risk of contracting a cold or flu.

2) Consider an effervescent if you are active

Effervescents are ideal for people with an active lifestyle and allows for an ‘on the go’ boost. The Vital range of effervescents consist of Magnesium, Vitamin B Complex, Vitamin C, Calcium + Vitamin D and a Multivitamin option.

3) Ensure the whole family takes a multivitamin

Adding supplements to your daily routine is an easy way to get the nutrients you and your family need to survive this winter.

“By adopting best hygiene practice and taking the correct supplements, you are able to strengthen the immune system and open the door to enjoying the outdoors with your family and friends this winter,” concludes Jooste.

Enter The Vital Health Foods Give-away

Vital Health Foods is giving away a hamper to one of our readers and entering is super simple! Leave a comment on this blog post and let us know what you do every winter to ensure your family stay healthy.

One lucky winner will win a Hamper to the value of over R2500 consisting of the following items:

  • 1 x Slazenger Jackets (Kway) Sizes may vary
  • 2 x Travel Mugs
  • 2 x Lunch Box Coolers
  • 2 x Hand Sanitizers
  • 2 x Vital Crips Cream Cheese & Chives 85g
  • 2 x Vital Crisps Sweet & Spicy Pepper Salsa flavour 85g
  • 2 x Vital Crisps Fruit Chutney flavour 85g
  • 1 x Vital Rice Cakes
  • 1 x Vital Corn Cakes
  • 1 x R1, 200 Vital Health Shopping Voucher

The winner will be announced on Thursday 12 July 2018 via blog post and the winner will be notified by email.

**This competition is only open to residents of South Africa.**

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  1. I have 2 young kids (7 and 6) so if the one gets sick, you know for sure the other one will too.. so for winter, I increase their intake of oranges for vitamin c.. They take a multi vitamin daily but I also add Echinaforce to try and boost their immune system. It is so cold in the mornings when I drop them off at school, so I ensure they wear a vest underneath their school clothes (which they absolutely hate) and rain jackets, gloves and beanies. I am that over-protective mom that says they can’t play outside after 4 when its cold lol.. old wives tales probably but I still abide by them. This is such an awesome hamper. I haven’t tried Vital on my kids yet, but I would love to.. in fact for the whole family.. Moms “don’t get sick of course” but that man flu is not fun to be around 🙂

    • I know exactly what you mean by that man fly @lynn0505! That is where things get tricky for me. It’s one thing looking after a sick child but looking after my hubby when he has man flu takes it right out of me!

      My kids and I take Vitamin C in winter to boost our immune systems which works well for us. I’m a firm believer in making my kids tough, so my kids have been out riding their bikes till supper time which is 6h30pm. Thankfully (touch wood) my kids hardly ever get ill now. Here’s hoping it stays that way!

      Good luck for the competition!

  2. I make a lot of veggie based meals for dinner. Specially veggie soup. My son (3 years old) loves broccoli, as he calles it, baby trees. As a family, we ate healthy every day no matter if its summer or winter.

    • You are so lucky your son loves broccoli @tanjaschoeman – both my kids have decided broccoli is “disgusting” and refuse to eat it. At least my daughter tried it before deciding that, my 4 year old son just saw green and decided it is a no go!

      Thankfully my kids do still eat well even if they won’t touch broccoli!

  3. This is the first year we actually have a bit of medical aid left for winter.. maybe hubby and I can actually do a dental visit this year lol Vitamins definitely play an important part.. Thanks for an awesome competition, fingers crossed 🙂

    • You are so fortunate to have some medical aid left this year @lynn0505 – we are lucky too this year. I remember a few years back when our entire family medical aid savings was zapped by April already! Not a good start to that year!

      Good luck with your dentist visits 🙂

  4. I always buy a multivitamin and or Vit B and C. It works like a charm.

    • Yes vitamin B can also be very beneficial. When I feel like my body is struggling I go for a Vitamin B injection and it boosts my energy levels and my immune system big time.

  5. I believe that one of the biggest problems we have in this day and age is that doctors are so darn quick to medicate and give antibiotics so quickly. Each time we (or our kids) take antibiotics it weakens our entire immune systems and leaves us vulnerable to whatever virus is next doing the rounds.

    I like to medicate as little as possible and let my kids bodies fight off whatever they get. Yes there is a time and a place for antibiotics and medication but I only go that route when it is absolutely necessary.

    For the most part I believe in being active, living a healthy lifestyle, eating properly and yes taking vitamins and supplements to build up the immune system.

    My kids have fortunately not been sick once in the last 3 years.

    • I couldn’t agree with you more on that one @sandi – my little sister was on so many antibiotics as a child and it completely messed with her immune system. Unfortunately often the lesson is only learned after the damage is done!

      We also try to go the natural route first and only take medication as a last resort.

  6. I have not tried Vital before. Thank you for this article.
    At home we use Centrum and Centrum Junior as well as Enchinaforce Junior.
    I don’t mind trying a new vitamin supplement in place of Centrum for my husband and myself. However, for my son I won’t change his supplements just yet as he is doing quite well with the ones he is currently on at the moment. Perhaps if I notice him getting sick more often then I can look into changing his vitamin supplements.
    I believe that all vitamins can’t be obtained directly from food when it comes to younger children as they can be very picky, therefore a supplement is always good to assist their immune systems.

    • Don’t mess with something that is working well @ron03 – and yes little ones can be so fussy when it comes to food. My daughter is eating like a champ now, but my 4 year old son is currently trying to survive on mayonnaise sandwiches – not exactly packed with nutrition! They go through those phases though so I am not too fussed about it. My daughter was the same at that age.

      • @Lynne these little ones will always make it difficult for us to get them to eat healthy meals, but as long as they eat we should let it be. I think every bite counts, and phases are short lived.

        I normally change his vitamins every few months, he isn’t fussy at all and has any medicines. There are a few vitamins that are sold over the counter which are truly useless and seemed to be a money-making scheme. I always compare the vitamin he was on compared to any prospective new one that I want to change him to, obviously there should be some added benefit.

        As far as probiotics is concerned the best probiotic I believe in is yogurt, and no kids hate yogurt so it works in our favour.

        I still have my fingers crossed for this one. 😊

  7. Thank you for such an awesome prize for this competition.

    Fingers crossed. 🙂

  8. Love the article! We believe in a good multivitamin and daily probiotic as well as a balanced healthy diet with lots of fruit and veg. Thanks for this awsome competition!

    • Probiotics are brilliant too, thanks for sharing that @liani! It is so important to always take probiotics when taking antibiotics, but they are also great to take daily anyway!

  9. Elize Swanepoel

    I’ve always loved Winter but I tend to agree with you Lynne. Since having a kid, my priorities shifted and it really is not ideal to have a sick child in the home.
    I prefer Autumn or Spring to be honest. Not too cold or hot, just the right temperature.

    I have started buying Tibbs Septoguard and Scotch Emulsion for JD since he was just a baby. My doctor recommended the product to me because it is a natural product and it helps to build up his immune. He does get sick quite often since he started Daycare but it usually last a few days only.

    Other preventative measures that I take during Winter times:
    * Bath JD as early as possible and get him dressed appropriately. (Hot enough but not too hot and uncomfortable).
    * I make use of vests underneath his clothes and pajamas.
    * I rub baby Vicks underneath his feet after a bath. (This helps to eliminate fever and keep his chest open).
    * I buy oranges to provide much needed Vitamin C. JD had his first taste of an orange the other night and he loves it. He almost finished a whole orange by himself.
    * I keep the doors and windows closed to keep the cold out.
    * I like to make hearty but healthy meals like soups and stews where you can incorporate vegetables. Luckily
    * I make sure that we always have fruit and yogurt in the house for in between snacks.
    * I keep the medicine cabinet stocked with baby Vicks, Karvol, Empaped and Calpol just in case JD develops a fever or get’s sick.
    * Instead of making use of a heater (that consumes electricity and causes health problems) I use an electric blanket to warm the beds. I switch it on an half an hour before bedtime and switch it off when we go to sleep).
    * I love drinking rooibos tea because it is tasty and contains antioxidants and other healthy ingredients.

    Prevention is always better than cure.

    Following a healthy lifestyle promotes good health and building up a good immune system.

    This is an amazing giveaway and winning a Vital gift voucher will go a long way in helping me to buy Vital vitamins and supplements to keep us all healthy this Winter. I love the Vital brand and have tried most of the healthy snacks since I started following a healthier lifestyle.

    Thanks for the opportunity to enter!

    • Brilliant tips there @loupie – thanks for sharing! I also love Vicks. My daughter often gets a stuffy nose at night so I rub it on her chest before she goes to sleep and it really helps a lot.

      You are spot on there – prevention is always better. Having a sick child is the pits.

  10. We always take a multivitamin and eat a lot of fruit and vegetables.

  11. Hi there, we often get a bag of oranges to squeeze some fresh juice. Also, I am very fanatical about washing hands, every, single time we go out and come home. My kids health improved dramatically once they washed their hands as they came home from school. Vit c is one of first go to products when a cold pops up.

    • Washing hands is so important @lynnith – thanks for adding that. It is so easy to pick something up, especially from the supermarkets! Plus when one member of the family gets ill washing hands can be the best way to ensure it doesn’t spread.

  12. Elize Swanepoel

    I agree @lynne. I tend to stick to things that I grew up. Vicks, Vaseline and camphor cream for instance have been around since I grew up. Products that have been around for so many years speak for themselves. 🙂 Whenever I get sick or have problems with my chest, I always resort to Vicks – rubbing it on the chest and back. Steaming the old fashion way with hot water, Vicks and a towel is also a great way to get rid of those nasty bugs.

    • Isn’t it amazing how we do the same things that our moms did @loupie? My mom also used to steam the old fashioned way, with our heads in a bowl and a dish cloth over our heads!

  13. What a brilliant topic, especially at this time of year when everyone is getting ill. My hubby and I don’t actually take any vitamins but I do give my kids Gummy Vites every day. They are in preschool and I have found if I don’t boost their immune system they come home with every single bug and cold that is going around.
    When it gets really cold and wet we don’t go out too much, I would love to be I always worry about them getting sick.

  14. Please moms am here to make good friends am first time mom with 16 weeks pregnant.I really need to understand more about been a mother.thanks

    • Welcome and don’t panic, we were all first time moms at one stage. You will do just fine. It is a scary thought being pregnant and bringing a child into the world, but you were made for this!

  15. Ok dear,thanks I will continue to stay positive while I learn more here.I regards to the family.

  16. Heya Lynne, Thanks for your reminder to enter this Giveaway! Oops, I nearly missed it!
    When Winter starts, I usually start my 4-year-old and I on a course of Oscillococcinum. It’s a homoeopathic remedy that you can take for flu but it also works really well as a prophylactic. If we take it at the first sign of cold or flu, we usually don’t get sick. If we leave it too late, we’ll also take Stodal Syrup (another homoeopathic from the same brand, Boiron).
    Personally, I also take ageLOC Vitality (NuSkin) and this week I just put myself on pHytoGreen SUPERFOOD juice (Wellness Warehouse) for extra energy. Feeling FANTASTIC!

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