Brain Foods for Kids
Your little one is growing up, learning and discovering new things each day. Good nutrition is fundamental to the healthy growth and development of every child. It sustains their energy levels and helps to support optimal brain function and development.
Did you know that food affects both a child's behavior and ability to learn? Making sure your toddler gets plenty of key nutrients is a smart start and encourages good eating habits in later life by learning to enjoy the wonderful textures and flavours of food.
Fish and Fish Oils - High in OMEGA-3 ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS
Improves brain function, memory, eye development, and help stabilize mood Lessens the effects of attention deficits
Food Source: Fat fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, shrimp, fresh tuna, trout, herring, halibut, scallops, walnuts, flaxseed, and omega-3 enriched eggs and yogurt, flavored Barleans Oils, beef, chicken (Grass-fed animals tend to have a higher amount and produce milk and eggs higher in omega-3 EFA)
Tip - if your kids aren't into fish, you can add a teaspoon of flaxseed oil/fish oil or sprinkle ground flaxseeds or chia seeds to a smoothie or other meals/snacks (muffins, casseroles, soups and even breadcrumbs before baking chicken cutlets)
provide the body with energy immediately
aid digestion and metabolism
promote optimal brain function
Certain carbs such as oatmeal, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, bananas before bed time help stabilize blood sugar levels, promote sound sleep and help prevent night time wake ups.
Food Source: whole grains, beans, legumes, vegetables, and fruits
The best complex carbs come from whole grains, vegetables, fruits, beans, legumes, nuts, and seeds.
Non-refined carbs are foods that contain a complete source of carbohydrates that include natural sugars and more importantly- fiber.
Refined carbs are foods like white bread, enriched flour and sugar which have been highly processed to the point that little to no nutrition remains.
Food rich in CHOLINE
Choline - also commonly known as "memory vitamin" is a nutrient that is essential for brain development and memory function, and it helps the brain communicate with the rest of the body
Beef, eggs, Cauliflower, Mushrooms, Dark Leafy Greens (spinach, collards, swiss chard), Asparagus, Brussels Sprouts, Cooked Bok Choy, Fish, yogurt, tofu, buckwheat
Tip: Most kids dislike broccoli, kale or asparagus due to slight bitterness. Young tongues are particularly sensitive to bitterness, and kids may instinctively repel from bitter foods. So to get your kids enjoy the taste, mask the bitterness with butter. Everything tastes better with butter, especially vegetables so try adding 1 tablespoon of butter per half cup of kale, asparagus, green beans, broccoli, and cooked spinach to reduce the bitterness.