Super Foods for Kids – Nutrition for Growing Children

sea fish

Although children need the same nutrients as adults do – vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrates, and fat – the amounts differ depending on the child’s age. In the current environment, diets are dominated by convenient, quick, and highly palatable foods that are not always the best choices to address the needs of growing children. The more they eat foods high in fat, sugar, and sodium, the stronger will be their craving for them, as these foods are known to hijack the brain and hormones responsible for hunger and satiety. To prevent this vicious cycle from happening, it is important to keep a balance of healthy, fresh, whole-food choices – “anytime foods,” along with some of the less healthful options as “sometime foods.” The following foods are great options for a healthy growth and development for kids.

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Sweet Potatoes- Super Foods for growing of Kids

Super Foods for Kids - Sweet potato
Super Foods for Kids – Sweet potato

Why they’re good for a growing body: These sweet tubers taste great warm or cold, and they’re pretty at look at, too. A sweet potato provides carbohydrate, potassium, vitamin C, folate, fiber, and carotenoids, substances that the body uses to make vitamin A and to fight off disease.

How to serve: Slice cold, cooked, peeled sweet potatoes for a snack or side dish. Mash cooked sweet potatoes with orange juice for an extra boost of vitamin C and folate. Thinly slice peeled sweet potatoes, toss in canola oil, and bake. Serve warm or cold as a potato chip substitute. Cut peeled sweet potatoes into wedges and roast along with sliced apples or white potatoes. Bake a crustless sweet potato pie and serve with low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt for a calcium-rich treat.

When to begin offering: There’s no reason why sweet potatoes can’t be one of the first vegetables your child eats during infancy. My kids loved pureed sweet potatoes straight out of the jar. You can make your own by thoroughly mashing or pureeing a cooked skinless tuber with breast milk or infant formula. Make sure the consistency is right for your infant’s developmental stage.

Greens

Super Foods for Kids - Green
Super Foods for Kids – Green

Green leafy veggies like spinach and kale are rich in folate and vitamins, which are linked to brain growth. Your kid may hate these for all the reasons, but you must find ways to sneak these to your kid’s meals. Add it to your kid’s omelettes, wraps and rolls with lettuce and tomatoes.

Fish- The best foods for kids

sea fish

Fish is also considered best food for brain development in children. Fishes like salmon, sardines and tuna are a rich source of vitamin D and omega 3 fatty acids. Both the nutrients are responsible to protect the brain against memory loss and age related memory decline. Omega 3 fatty acids also give your kid’s immunity a boost, so make sure you include at least 2-3 servings of this one every week.

Kidney Beans

kidney beans 2

Kidney beans are thought to be great for those affected by asthma, and serve as a good source of protein for vegetarians. Consumption of kidney beans is believed to boost memory and prevent many lifestyle related disorders.

Turmeric

Turmeric
Known for its anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric is one of the best memory-boosting foods you could add to your kid’s diet. Its curcumin content helps brain function and also fights inflammation of brain tissues, making them stronger and resistant to Alzheimer’s disease and plaque formation. If you enjoy Indian cuisine, you are all set because most Indian dishes are prepared with turmeric.

Eggs and chicken

Eggs & chicken- Super Foods for Kids
Eggs & chicken- Super Foods for Kids

Protein is one such nutrient which cannot be altered with anything else. It is the most needed ingredient that functions well with other nutrients to ensure proper growth of height. Protein is associated with the growth of tissues and repairs the damaged tissue. Also, it ensures the growth of lean muscle and helps in the overall development of a child, giving him/her enough energy to go through the day! Adding egg whites and boiled or grilled chicken in your daily meal can help your child in growing taller and stronger.

 

As you can see, it is quite easy to sneak in these foods for brain development in children’s diet. Doing so will ensure his mental well being in a natural way. Please share your own suggestions on brain food for kids in the comments section below.