This summer is bittersweet for me. I’m trying to enjoy every minute with my kids because at the end of August both are going away to college. My son is starting his Junior year and moving into an on-campus apartment and my daughter is starting her Freshman year. So the depressing term “empty nest” keeps popping up.
After a couple of years of experience with my son, I learned how unhealthy most of the food choices are at school and we’ve learned to add our own healthy products to improve the situation. So I thought I would create a shopping list with links to products that I recommend to help prepare your kids for their next few months away without Mom’s protective eye watching every decision they make. You’d be surprised how much a few smart items can make a difference and set up a good foundation for a stronger immune system – which is the best way to fight off viruses and the flu!
My son used the ZeroWater filter last year and really liked it. Its the only one that filters lead and other heavy metals. ZeroWater is the only filtration system that fits the FDA definition of purified bottled water. It takes a while to filter enough water to fill the whole dispenser, but that’s because the filter is working hard. I just feel that its healthier to drink filtered water – better than bottled. And its better for the environment. Actually, there is a very big movement happening to ban water bottles on college campuses. 90 universities and colleges have already started banning the sale of water bottles on campus due to the environmental hazards of plastic bottles and because the cost of bottled water is marked up so tremendously. That’s why I suggested that he try it and now I bought one for my daughter as well with a re-usable glass bottle.
Click Here to purchase this filter
Everything simply tastes better in a glass bottle.
These bottles do not stain, smell, or have a metallic/plastic taste. Glass bottles are free of chemicals including BPA/S, phthalates, PVC, lead and cadmium. If you’d like to be part of this revolution or if you just want your kids to drink more water, try out the ZeroWater dispenser. Water is the easiest and most cost-effective thing you can add to their diet to help keep them properly hydrated, to keep their brains functioning at maximum, to give them energy and to help their bodies feel great. No sports drink does this, only water can!
Click Here to purchase this bottle!
One of my favorite items for everything is an essential oil diffuser. This inexpensive one is perfect for a dorm room and just needs a little water and a couple of drops of the right oils, depending on what the student needs. It also lights up with different colors, which is really cool.
Click Here to purchase this diffuser now!
Try some lavender if they need to unwind and chill out after a long day or if its hard to fall asleep. If they aren’t feeling well, congested and coughing, peppermint oil or eucalyptus is great for opening the nasal passages and lungs. (Warning: Rosemary, fennel, sage, eucalyptus, hyssop, camphor and spike lavender are not recommended as essential oils if you have epilepsy. This is because these essential oils may trigger seizures in some people with epilepsy.) Be sure to order 100% pure, organic essential oils to get the purest oils.
This is a great way to get them to drink protein drinks/smoothies. Its a single serve small blender, easy to clean, easy to store.
1-2 scoops Garden of Life chocolate protein powder
1 cup unsweetened almond milk, coconut milk or organic whole milk
2 tablespoons peanut butter
3-5 ice cubes
Click Here to Purchase
Garden of Life’s plant based protein powder. I’ve tried many different types of protein powder and both my son and I enjoy this one the best. It’s all organic, gluten free, 0 sugar (no artificial sweeteners either) 22 grams of plant protein, which is easy to digest and lots of probiotics and digestive enzymes, which are key to proper gut health which is the foundation to a good immune system.
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RXBARs are whole food protein bars made with clean, simple ingredients. Egg whites, dates and nuts are combined with delicious flavors to create a nutritious bar.
click the picture above or below to purchase
My son enjoys these because they are low in sugar and have minimal ingredients. I personally have a problem with them because they tend to be very chewy and get stuck in my teeth. I love the flavors, don’t love the stickiness. My favorite is Lara Bars:
Amazon is currently having a great sale on a box of 16 for $15.97! They are gluten free, dairy free, Non-GMO, Fair Trade Certified, and their wrappers can be recycled and upcycled. My favorite flavor is Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip. They are 4-ingredient bars made from a simple blend of dates, peanuts, chocolate chips, and sea salt.
This sleep mask is made of 100% top quality 19mm natural mulberry silk on BOTH sides. The super soft, super smooth silk is light weight, breathable and protein rich, which gives you total blackout. One size fits all. Gentle, easy-to-adjust headband won’t tangle hair. Such a simple, inexpensive item, can make a major difference in the quality of sleep they can get. Especially if their roommate is on a different schedule or coming and going a lot.
I’m sure you thought I would say Vitamin C. Yes, that is also a good choice for supporting your immune system, but the real powerhouse vitamin that most of America is extremely deficient of is Vitamin D. The difference is, you need to have this level checked at least once a year through bloodwork ordered by your doctor with a 25OH Vitamin D test because it is a fat soluble vitamin that can cause problems if the level becomes too high. The standard that most Dr.’s offices go by is a level of 35 being “normal”. The Dr. that I work for likes to see it much higher than that – more like 50-60ng/mL A dose of 1000 iu of D3 a day is a very minimal dose to start with. Just make sure you get D3 not D2.
Vitamin D3’s role in immune health has long been established; vitamin D receptors are found on a number of immune cells, including lymphocytes and macrophages, supporting healthy immune cell activation. Vitamin D also supports cardiovascular function in some individuals and is now believed to help prevent cancer, it supports bones with calcium absorption and dozens of other health benefits. ‡
‡These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
The information contained herein is for informational purposes only and does not establish a doctor-patient relationship. Please be sure to consult your physician before taking this or any other product.
This blogpost contains affiliate links, which means if you click on the link and purchase the product, I will get a small commission. This does not affect the price at all to you. Thank you for your support. I hope this helps your planning for move-in day a little easier!