Top list of healthy foods for growing kids
We all know that children must eat healthy and nutritious foods, especially in their formative years. As parents, we need to ensure that they get the right amount of nutrition at the right time. Children require an adequate amount of nutrients, minerals, and vitamins, in order to grow and develop a healthy body and lifestyle.
We should try to avoid the consumption of processed food or snacks at all times. There are a lot of side effects that these have on kids, which initially might not be visible but in the long run are harmful to their bodies. Nutritious diet not only helps in physical development but also keeps a lot of diseases and ailments like osteoporosis, heart disease, cancer or cavities at bay. Children who have a healthy diet are less likely to suffer from common problems like obesity. Let us try to make a list of healthy foods, which can be beneficial for our little ones:
This one is a food having a high level of protein and DHA level that helps in the proper growth of the brain cells in your child.
Blueberries and strawberries are a rich source of vitamins and antioxidants. They are very good for your little one. You can give these to your kiddo as a whole or even sprinkle some sugar on them.
This one is again a source of high protein and must be incorporated as part of a regular diet in your child. You can push it in a sandwich with lettuce, or mix with rice or cheese to make it more yummy and appealing for your little one.
Legumes help in easy digestion and are full of fiber. You can include legumes, such as baked beans, black beans, black-eyed beans, or even chickpeas in your kiddo’s diet.
Dairy has formed an integral part in every kitchen. It is strongly advised by the doctors that whole milk should be given to kids for their proper growth and development. The intake of milk ensures the best source of calcium and protein. Calcium is extremely important to strengthen the bones. Calcium and phosphorus are important sources of energy, required for proper growth.
Grandma’s Tip: You can serve milk with cereal or cookies, or even blend it with fruits to make it more tasty and healthy for your child. Whenever your child has a cold or a sore throat, mix some turmeric into a glass of warm milk and make the little one have it. This haldi wala doodh is an effective cure for several health issues.
The bacteria present in yogurt is extremely beneficial for the growth of your child. You can either make the little one eat plain yogurt or serve it along with some fruits to make it more delicious and healthy.
7. Fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables should form a very important part of your child’s meal. They are integral for wholesome development and route the growth in the correct way since they have high energy levels and help kids overcome any form of physical complexities like obesity or lack of energy. The regular intake of fruits and vegetables indicate better performances by your child. They also help in boosting the immunity system and promote good health, reducing the risk of anemia in kids.
You can add food items like apricots, plums, or broccoli to your child’s meals to ensure regular bowel movements. It has been observed that children who eat properly also have better academic results, and fare better in their overall development.
8. Whole grains
Whole grains usually form a part of the staple diet in most Indian families and are highly nutritious. Thus, they must be given to children regularly.
9. Sweet potato
Sweet potato has a high source of beta-carotene which contains high levels of essential antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. To get the best results from the consumption of sweet potatoes you must steam them or boil them. It helps in the prevention of oxidative damage and promotes healing.
10. Nuts and flaxseeds
Nuts and flaxseeds are high sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are optimal for brain development and growth. Flaxseed is sold whole and ground. It’s preferable that you use flaxseed in grounded form to enable the body to absorb maximum nutrients. You can sprinkle these grounded flaxseeds on to the cereals or in the sweet treats.
Tofu is enriched with protein, vitamin B, calcium, and iron – and yes, of course, all these ingredients are required for the growth of your child. Although tofu is not highly preferred by kids they can be surely used to provide a base for smoothies, desserts, cookies, or even ice creams.
We have tried to elaborate and explain the essential amount of nutrition required to ensure proper development and growth of your child. You must try to ensure that calorie intake should be anything between 1200-1800 units for girls and 1400-2000 units for boys. Proteins can be anything between 10-30% of the calories intake. Fats can be anything between 25-35%, carbohydrates can be 45-65%, fiber – 25 gms, and calcium around 800 mg.