Eating the right foods can help with your child’s brain development as well as overall health. It is well known that food and the nutrients it contains aid in brain development, growth and function. Special nutrients in childhood are especially beneficial for the developing brain and its function.
These nutrients are provided in significant amounts from the foods we refer to as brain foods. Protein, iron and zinc are essential for brain growth from an early age. Fortunately, these nutrients can be found in dark meats, poultry, beans and certain grains. Dark meat is usually found in the more active muscle groups, such as chicken legs and thighs. Therefore, dietician Vidhi Chawla shares some foods to be used in the brain development of young children.
eggs- Eggs are high in protein and other nutrients that support brain health. Choline is found in egg yolk. It is an important component of cell membranes that the body uses to produce neurotransmitters and cell membrane signaling. It has been shown to play an important role in the brain development of a fetus or infant. Eggs are also a good source of protein and keep your baby full for longer.
Nuts- Nuts and seeds are simple additions to your child’s diet that can benefit brain and heart health. It contains a lot of protein, essential fatty acids, iron and zinc. Nuts and seeds also contain vitamin E, which can enhance cognitive function, such as thinking, comprehension, problem solving, learning, decision-making, and attention, and prevents free radical damage that can lead to mental decline . Walnuts, in particular, are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which support brain health.
Berries and Oranges- Antioxidants are found in plenty in fruits, especially berries. Jamun contains anthocyanins and flavonoids, which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Oxidative stress and inflammation can have negative effects on neurological processes. Including antioxidant-rich foods in the diet can help prevent mental decline. Vitamin C-rich fruits like oranges are a good option to keep a child’s mind healthy and alert. Research has proved that vitamin C in fruits has been found to protect against mental decline and enhance mental health.
Yogurt- Giving your child yogurt or a protein-rich snack for breakfast is a great way to help them maintain good mental health. Iodine is found in dairy products such as yogurt. It is an essential nutrient for brain development and cognitive function. Milk and yogurt are both high in protein and carbohydrates, which are the brain’s preferred energy source.
Salmon- Fatty fish such as salmon are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are needed for brain development and function. In fact, recent research has shown that people who eat more fatty acids have faster brains and perform better on mental skill tests. Tuna is also an excellent source of lean protein. Broadly speaking, lean protein means low in fat and cholesterol in any food.
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