Maintaining an active lifestyle is a very important in order to stay alert and healthy. This is so true even with little children. Children who do physical activities for at least three hours a day have better defenses against sickness such as cold and flu. Doing regular exercise enhances their immune system and making them not susceptible to diseases. Engaging in adequate physical activities and exercise can help them stay away from upper respiratory infections while stress and obesity can weaken the immune system.
A researcher with Brock University in Ontario Canada, Thomas J. Cieslek conducted a study utilizing a group of fifth-grade children. The research aimed to analyze the immunity, physical fitness levels, stress levels and body fat of this group from May to June, a season in Canada where infection is observed to occur in moderate to high rates. According to the study, it was found out that 22% of the boys and 32% of the girls do not engage in physical activities for at least three hours a day. Furthermore, this group of children is reported to have more sick days when compared to active children. Their immune system is lowered and with more body fat.
Additionally, 40% of the children who do not have physical activities had more than 25% body fat and they have more incidents of catching colds and flu compared to other children in the study. Cielsek therefore suggest based on the results of the study that children should be allowed to do regular physical activities for them to improve their general health. Parents play a significant role in allowing and encouraging their children to do physical activities which will result in enhanced children’s immune system.
Parents should serve as role models to their children by being physically active or involve in sports on a regular basis. In this way, they are able to inculcate into their children the enthusiasm as well as the benefits of participating in sports and other physical activities. Children should be involved in physical activities that are appropriate for their age and parents should oversee their children as they undertake and progress in their efforts. The American Heart Association suggests that children as early as 2 years old can engage in physical movement each day for at least an hour or more which is suitable for each child’s development stage. Physical activities can be broken down into segments or sessions whichever is more fitting to them.