One of the major worries of parents is about the food the child is eating.
You worry over the nutritional content of the food but may not also consider that the food your child eats should also help to develop the brain and memory. Foods are not just meant to fill the stomach or keep the body going.
The power of healthy eating lies in its ability to energize your child’s energy, sharpen the mind and affect her mood. Parents need to know that the food given to a child within the first 1000 days of a child’s life will affect their lifelong performance in all areas of life. Children should be taught to avoid sugary and fatty foods while eating healthy food at an early age. This is because nutrition is recognized as the single greatest environmental influence on children.
Here are some foods you should NOT give your child;
Packed & processed food: Examples are packed chips, crisps, burger & pizza, noodles with Monosodium Glutamate (MSG). MSG is used to sweeten food a large portion of your noodles seasoning contain MSG. MSG causes mood and behaviour changes, headaches and hyperactivity. Giving your kids fast foods may be an easy way out of the burden of cooking yet it dangerous to the health of your children.
Avoid foods containing artificial colouring: Artificial colouring has many negative effects on children who take foods containing them. It is commonly found in sugary packed food such as burger and some loaves of bread and even yoghurt. The intake of artificial colouring is closely linked to ADHD, anxiety, hyperactivity, and headaches and behavioural change in children.
Avoid foods high in trans-fats and moderate your intake of foods with saturated fats: Instead use healthy fats such as corn oil, soybean oil, vegetable oil, groundnut oil, olive oil, palm oil. Nuts, such as groundnuts, cashew nuts are also good source of fat.
Avoid drinks such as soft drinks, cold drinks, caffeinated drinks, tea, coffee, and sugar
Here are some foods that you should give your child:
Eggs: Eggs are an excellent source of protein and the yolk has choline, which helps the memory.
Milk & Yogurt: They are filled with protein and vitamins, which is essential for brain development.
Vegetables: colourful veggies such as tomatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, carrots, spinach and others are rich in antioxidants that help the brain cells to be strong and healthy.
Pulses or Beans: They give your child’s body energy and protein with other essential vitamins and minerals.
Fruits: Orange, Pineapple, Strawberries, Avocado contain antioxidants and numerous Vitamins.
Whole Grains: such as wheat contains fibre and it provides the brain with a constant supply of glucose, and whole grains provide that in spades.
Oats/Oatmeal: This is a nutritious cereal for kids. It provides an amazing burst of energy that fuels the brain in the morning. It is loaded with fiber, vitamin E, vitamin B, potassium, and zinc.
Meat and Fish: Fatty fish like Catfish, Titus are a good source of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA, which is essential for brain growth.