When to keep your child home from school

Nina Lundberg, MD  whose specialty is Internal Medicine and who provides comprehensive, patient-focused medical care, wrote for Edward-Elmhust Health’s Healthy Driven Blog that every parent knows this scenario: your little one wakes up after a seemingly normal night’s sleep feeling awful, complaining about a sore throat or coughing.

You’re left with the dilemma of trying to decide if your child should stay home from school — and making that decision in a relatively short period of time.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends kids stay home if:

  • They have a fever
  • They aren’t well enough to participate in class
  • They may be contagious to other children

If they’re taking antibiotics, kids should stay home until they’ve had the medicine in their system for 24 hours, even if they don’t meet the above criteria.

If your child is vomiting or has diarrhea, she should stay home until she has had no symptoms for 24 hours. If they are running a temperature, most schools want kids to stay home until they haven’t had a fever for 24 hours as well.

Ultimately, your child’s physician is the best person to ask if you aren’t sure whether your child should go to school. But using common sense, along with the AAP guidelines, will ensure you make the right choice. Read more

Everyday Ideas to Move More

The National Heart, Lung, Blood Institute suggests that families move more each day and have fun with it. Think about what your family can do to be active together. Here are some ideas.

Make Time

  • Identify free times. Keep track of your daily activities for one week. Pick two 30-minute time slots you could use for family activity time.
  • Add physical activity to your daily routine. For example, walk or ride your bike to work or a friend’s house, walk the dog with your children, exercise while you watch TV, or park farther away from your destination.
  • Try to walk, jog, or swim during your lunch hour, or take fitness breaks instead of coffee breaks. Try doing something active after dinner with your family, or on weekends.
  • Check out activities requiring little time. Try walking, jogging, or stair climbing.

Bring Others Into It

  • Ask friends and family to support your efforts.
  • Invite them to be active with you.
    • Set up a party or other social event with activities that get people moving, like dancing or having a jump rope contest.
    • Exercise with friends.
    • Play with your kids or ask them to join you for an exercise video or fitness game.
  • Develop new friendships with physically active people. Join a group, such as the YMCA or a hiking club.

Energize Yourself

  • Plan to be active at times in the day or week when you feel you have a lot of energy.
  • Convince yourself that if you give it a chance, physical activity will increase your energy level; then try it.

Stay Motivated

  • Plan ahead. Make physical activity a regular part of your family’s schedule. Write it on a family activity calendar.
  • Join an exercise group or class. Sign your children up for community sports teams or lessons.
  • Pick activities requiring no new skills, such as walking or climbing stairs.
  • Exercise with friends who are at the same skill level as you are. Create opportunities for your children to be active with friends.

Read more

Healthy Natural Tips for You and Your Family and Friends

Carrie Raab, atYL Oil Lady , shared the following “Back To School” healthy hints because it seems that the new school year environment is a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. That means, here comes the runny noses, coughs, sneezes and colds that kids spread in the classroom and in the school hallways. While you most likely don’t have control of your child’s classroom, you do have control over your own home environment and your kids health.  While you have been busy getting their school uniforms/outfits,books,backpacks,and plethora of school supplies ready, I want to remind you of the benefit of essential oils for keeping everyone healthy.  I want to share with you some back to school healthy tips.

Back to School Healthy Tips


Nutrition is vital in your overall well-being. Your children need to be eating a diet full of protein, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. The more they can stay away from processed canned and packaged foods and restaurants, the better. We are what we eat! Most of our illnesses come from the foods we eat, the products we put on our skin, and the medicines we take. Make sure your kids are getting plenty of immune-system supporting antioxidants in the form of vegetables and fruit.  I love supporting my children’s diet with 1 ounce of NingXia Red and a good multivitamin that has whole fruits, grains and vegetables-this helps on those days when their diet is lacking in the nutrients it needs. Also, give your child probiotics to help support the immune system and provide good gut intestinal flora, which will also ward off harmful bacteria.

Click here for 25 healthy snacks for children.

2Regular Hand Washing

Teaching your children to wash their hands regularly will help fight off germs they come in contact with. Also, teach your children to cough or sneeze by covering their nose and mouth first. Many germs are spread this way. To help prevent picking up some of these pesky little germs, regular hand washing is great. While at school, you cannot always get to a sink, so this is where Thieves Waterless Hand Gel Purifier  comes in handy! The ones you buy at the store contain toxic chemicals, so go natural and use thieves gel purifying hand sanitizer.

 3. Sleep

Getting good rest at night is so important not only for the next day but for the days and week ahead. Do you know how important rest is? A good night’s sleep lays the foundation for physical and mental development as well as supporting a healthy immune system. Do your children struggle with going to sleep? I know transitioning from summer time with no morning wake up routine to a school morning routine is difficult in my household.  This is where essential oils can help! What we love to do at night is massage our kids feet with lavender, peace and calming, grounding, valor, and other oils that signal the brain to relax and help improve their quality of sleep. 

4. Nervous

A new year at school can be an exciting yet stressful time, especially for students starting kindergarten or entering middle or high school. Instead of putting harmful chemicals- over the counter and prescription drugs into their body, go natural and use essential oils. A few good oils to use to help with occasional nervousness are Valor, Peace and Calming, Lavender, or Stress Away. These oils will not cause your children to be drowsy, they will balance the systems in the body, naturally, and allow them to focus on their school work and be at peace.

Read more

Coaching your child to a successful school year

Dr. Erik L. Johnson, from Amita Health, says that back to school means back to routine for everyone, and for parents that can be a real challenge for their children after a summer filled with sleeping in, later hours and nonstop fun.Getting children in the mindset for returning to the classroom starts long before the first school bell. Here are a few recommendations to help.

Discuss expectations

Begin the school year with a family meeting to establish a playbook for a successful year.

Everyone needs to understand their “job” in the family.

For your child, the job is going to school and learning. Consider privileges like screen time, weekend sleepovers, or other activities as a reward for your child for following the plan.

Your job is to be their coach to help them navigate the school year and cheer them on when they succeed. Let them come up with strategies, ideas, consequences and rewards.

A big part of a successful school year is everyone getting out of the house on time.

The first page in your playbook should be to avoid running around at the last minute, yelling from the sidelines for everyone to get dressed and hurry-up.

You don’t want to start your day stressed, so coach your kids to be ready to go.

Avoid morning madness

A good morning starts the night before.

To make an effective plan, start backward to determine the time your child needs to sleep and set a bedtime.

Now you know how much time you have left to prepare for the day ahead. Run through your pregame checklist as part of your cool down before bedtime.

• Homework done (before screen time)

• Clothes laid out

• Lunch made

• Permission slips signed

• Grab-and-go nutritious foods if you have a kid that does not like to eat first thing in the morning (yogurt, breakfast bar or PB&J)

Read more

Learning well: Plan for a healthy start to the school year

Laura Milani Alessio, from the American Academy of Pediatrics, shared that freshly sharpened pencils, glue sticks and other supplies top the back-to-school checklist for many families. Making sure children have everything they need to stay healthy and safe, however, also is essential to a successful year of learning.

“To thrive in school, every child needs a nutritious diet, enough exercise, sleep, and other basic building blocks of wellness,” said pediatrician Sandra Hassink, who leads the American Academy of Pediatrics Institute for Healthy Childhood Weight. “Study after study shows that healthy students are better able to learn,” she said.

  • Food for thought: Research shows that children who eat a nutritious breakfast have improved concentration and memory, get better grades and score higher on standardized tests. Healthy school lunches also are an important part of a child’s overall nutrition. To supply enough nutrients and energy to last the day, meals should include whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and lean protein and dairy foods. Limit highly processed products and sugar-sweetened beverages such as soda.
  • Active bodies, active brains: Building an hour’s worth of exercise into the daily routine helps keep children’s bodies — and brains — strong.  Physically active students tend to have better grades, school attendance, classroom behavior and cognitive function. Because the best exercise for younger children is active play, the AAP supports daily recess in schools.
  • Arriving Safely: Walking or riding a bicycle to school is a great way to get exercise, but make sure the route is safe, and teach your child traffic safety rules. Children should always wear a helmet while riding a bike or skateboard. If your child rides a bus to school, it should have seat belts.
  • ABCs and Zzz’s: Students need between 8 and 12 hours of sleep each night. Skimping on sleep can affect their health, behavior and academic performance. Because teens naturally fall asleep later, the AAP recommends middle and high schools start no earlier than 8:30 a.m. Light from smartphones, TVs and devices can disrupt sleep, so turn them off at least an hour before bed. Read more

Have Fun – Win Prizes

Have you registered yet for Flat Apple 2017?  No?  There is still time to participate and earn raffle tickets to win some great prizes.

All you have to do is:

  1. Click on the Facebook link at the top of our website at www.healthylombard.com and then click “Sign Up” or use the link on the Flat Apple 2017 Page on our website. WHEN REGISTERING, PLEASE REMEMBER AFTER YOU FILL IN THE STUDENT INFORMATION TO COMPLETE THE PARENT/GUARDIAN INFORMATION. Once registered you will receive confirmation and a copy of the 2017 logo.
  2. Like us on our Facebook Healthy Lombard Selfies page (so that you can post your Selfies and Videos).
  1. Participate in any or all of the Flat Apple Activity. There are 4 ways to have fun:


  • Go to a designated site BETWEEN June 1 and August 10. (I.e. Guest Services Desk, Located Lower Level below The Eatery at Yorktown Mall, (the list can be found on both the Healthy Lombard’s Flat Apple 2017 webpage and Calendar Page), show the Flat Apple logo, participate in their activity, and then fill out a raffle ticket.
  • Find our Geocache sites. (The coordinates will be listed on our Flat Apple Page and emailed out to participants.) Take a selfie with the Flat Apple Geo Sign, post it on our Facebook Healthy Lombard Page. (We will fill out one raffle ticket for you per site/per day.)
  • Create a 1-minute or less video on a healthy topic using Facebook Live, Instagram, or similar app. (ideas are on the Healthy Lombard Flat Apple 2017 website). Post it to our Facebook Healthy Lombard Page (We will fill out one raffle ticket for you for each posting we approve.) Remember to add in your family password so we can find you!
  • Take a selfie of YOU doing something healthy (swimming, playing ball, etc.) using Instagram or a similar app. Post it to our Facebook Healthy Lombard Page. DON’T FORGET to add in your family password so we can fill out a raffle ticket for you. Limit – 1 photo per day.)



The participant (preschool – high school age individual) MUST BE registered by a parent or guardian to win.


Although Flat Apple activities are open to children from preschool to high school, some events are age-specific so please check event information on the Flat Apple 2017 Page of the Healthy Lombard website.


Individuals participate in activities at their own risk.


Students may participate in more than 1 activity per day but cannot repeat an activity (i.e. student could do 1 geocache photo, 1 selfie photo, 1 video, and 1 site activity each day but cannot do 2 or more of the same type of activity each day.)


Registering grants permission for photo of participation (not name) to be posted on the Healthy Lombard Internet sites.


*Raffle drawing will be held at the August Healthy Lombard Partner Board Meeting. Winners will be notified by email or phone and their FIRST names will be posted on the Flat Apple 2017 page of the Healthy Lombard website.


Winners and their families will be invited to a prize reception in September.


Questions?    Check out the Flat Apple 2017


“Are we there yet?”

Schar, producers of gluten-free products shared that long car journeys with children are often exhausting, boring and take their toll on your nerves. But this does not have to be the case. With a bit of preparation and our ideas and suggestions, which are guaranteed to be gluten free, bad moods need never be an issue when you are on the way to your holiday destination.

  • Small children in particular often react sensitively if you disturb their routine. You should therefore consider your little ones’ sleeping and eating habits even when you are en route. On no account should you take the children out of their car seats when they are asleep; your offspring should never be in the car without their seat belts on.
  • Even though you have air conditioning, consider that the little ones need protection from the sun: The sun shades that can be attached to the windows using a suction cup are amusing to look at and keep the worst of the heat at bay.
  • One thing that is really important is provisions. Fruit is great to take on a trip because it is easy to digest and does not sit heavily in the stomach. Lovingly prepared gluten free bread rolls, such as Ciabatta or Deli Style from Schar, which can be filled with all kinds of delicious ingredients, are also ideal.
  • In order to ensure that things are not too “healthy”, think about taking something sweet as well – which, of course, can be gluten free; unfilled biscuits such as Shortbread cookies may be crumbly, but they do not leave behind any greasy marks so they are safe to take with you in the car. Lightly salted gluten free snacks such as Schar Table Crackers also work well.

Read more

Girls and autism: It can be subtle, or absent

sad-girlThink autism and an image of an awkward boy typically emerges. The developmental disorder is at least four times more common in boys, but scientists taking a closer look are finding some gender-based surprises: Many girls with autism have social skills that can mask the condition. And some girls are born without autism despite the same genetic mutations seen in boys with the condition, The Associated Press reports.

The gender effect is a hot topic in autism research and one that could lead to new ways of diagnosing and treating a condition that affects at least 1 in 68 U.S. children.

Better understanding of gender’s role is key to helping the most people, said Kevin Pelphrey, an autism researcher at George Washington University. “Autism may not be the same thing in boys and girls.”

Brain imaging suggests there may be an additional explanation for why many girls with autism have more subtle symptoms, Pelphrey said.

“The surprising thing we are finding is that even in girls who clearly have autism,” brain regions involved in social behavior that are normally affected are less severely impaired, he said. Read more

Remember: September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

FORWARD-LogoAnn Marchetti, FORWARD Director shared that FORWARD places a high priority on reducing the rates of childhood obesity in DuPage County, as highlighted in the annual FORWARD BMI report.
Over the next 3 years, FORWARD will work with community leaders and key stakeholders to improve nutrition and physical activity within schools, worksites, and for children in the early childhood years. This work needs your helps and Ann invite each one of you to become familiar with the three-year goals below, and to partner with FORWARD to help  meet or exceed the objectives.  
Check out resources and next steps here: for worksites, for early childhood centers, and for schools.