4 Factors that Deplete the Immune function

The gut plays a central role when it comes to an immune system working at peak performance.

This is because 80 percent of the immune system resides within the gut wall.

Also living deep within the gut, along side the immune system, is a collection of different types of bacteria, collectively called the gut microbiome. These play a very important role in your child’s health and are a key component to a robust immune system.

Good Bacteria – The Back Bone of A Healthy Immune System

Bacteria is mostly associated with germs, however, they are extremely important for immune function.

The bacteria living in the gut are the back-bone of a healthy immune system. And this is because the bacteria and the immune system work together hand-in-hand to fight off infection and keep your child healthy.

An imbalance of bacteria where there are more bad than good microbes in the gut may a contributing factor to poor immunity.

The best way to help support the growth of healthy microbes in your child’s gut, is to ensure they are eating a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fermented foods.

Here are some of the main offenders that may be depleting your child’s beneficial bacteria to negatively impact their immune function.


If your child is constipated, this is a leading cause of poor gut health which may impact the immune system.  When food is sitting around inside the gut for days or weeks on end, it is essentially fermenting and going off.  Constipation negatively impacts the immune system by disrupting the balance between the good and bad bacteria.

Ideally, your child needs to have one or two good poops each day.

Fizzy Drinks, Sports Drinks and Fruit Juice

Any one of these drinks can contain up to 8 teaspoons of sugar per serve.  Sugar depletes immunity in a number of ways. It feeds bad bacteria and this can fuel a fungal overgrowth on the gut wall that negatively impacts the immune system.  

If your child has a white coating on their tongue, this can be a sign there is a fungal infection present.

Multiple Courses of Antibiotics

Antibiotics kill all bacteria, good and bad. They can be especially harmful to the friendly bacteria living deep within the gut when they are prescribed in the first few years of life. This is because friendly bacteria are still trying to establish their diversity and numbers. Once the friendly bacteria are depleted, it can be difficult to re-establish their numbers and this is especially the case in the early stages of your child’s development.  A common reason for prescribing antibiotics is ear infections. Read this post for a natural way to treat ear infections without antibiotics.

Processed Food

Basically anything that comes in a package is processed food and a large percentage of these can also be classed as junk food. Processed foods are usually high in sugar which feeds bad bacteria and they also contain chemicals in the form of preservatives, colours and flavourings all of which negatively impact friendly bacteria – remember, these are the back bone of your child’s immunity.

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To make an appointment with Fiona Stock, naturopath in Melbourne, Contact hello@thechildrensnaturopath.com. I’m here to assist you and your child on your journey to better children’s health.

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I’ve also included cheatsheets, checklists, nourishing recipes and 25 page book of class notes.

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Fiona focusses on natural therapies for children’s health.

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