10 Key Brain Foods for Your Kids

Are you concerned about the intellectual health of your child? Are you looking for ways to boost his brain power? The first three years of a child’s life are crucial to his brain development. If you are a mother and you have already begun to think of ways to enhance your child’s brain development, the good news is that there are natural ways to achieve this without the use of synthetic brain boosters.

Food is the primary source of natural brain boosters, alongside music and recreational activities. As a parent, it is essential you take this seriously as there is need to actively assist in the development of your child’s brain. This is the only organ that isn’t fully developed at birth. In fact, when a person is born, he only has about 25% of an average adult’s brain size. Here are some key foods to help boost your child’s brain.

Vegetables

Vegetables, especially colourful ones like carrots, pumpkins and sweet potatoes, have cancer prevention agents and antioxidants. These agents also assist in mental development. Green leafy vegetables are also known to help prevent dementia as they are rich in folate. It is very difficult to get most kids to take vegetables so you have to be creative here. The trick lies in how you serve them vegetables. For instance, you can whip spinach into smoothies or add it to their precious omelets and lasagna.

Greek Yoghurt

Greek yoghurt contains more protein than regular ones. The B complex vitamins present in it helps in growing the neurotransmitters and brain tissues. They ensure the brain cell membranes are kept flexible for a smooth transference of information and signals. Besides breast milk, yoghurt is the second best food for the child’s mental development. It contains probiotics which are essential for the guts.

It will not be so difficult serving your kids this as children love yoghurt. You can enhance its taste and nutritional value by serving it with dark chocolate chips which contain polyphenols. These are known to increase blood flow which keeps the child’s mind active at all times.

Fish

One good thing about fish is that it can be given the child during the weaning process. Fatty fish like tuna, mackerel, salmon, sardine, and so on, are rich in omega-3 acids, which the human brain needs to function optimally. Studies have found that nearly 60% of the brain is made up of fat, and omega 3 fats are closely linked to its health. Omega3s also help in maintaining a healthy immune system. Fish is also essential in the regulation of gene expression in the child’s brain, making it one of the primary foods you need to introduce to him immediately he is ready for solids.

Feeding your baby with the right amount of fatty fish will also provide him with calcium, zinc, vitamin D, and iron. If you are looking for vitamin D, wild-caught salmon contains a significantly high amount of it than other sources. You should also try sardines and herrings.

Eggs

Because of the many nutrients found in the egg yolk, it is perfect for supporting a child’s development. It is a storehouse of nutrients, which is not surprising, given that it is designed to provide everything an embryo needs. It is rich in zinc, omega-3 acids, choline, and so on. Choline particularly helps in the development of the brain stem cells which improves the memory. This nutrient is also ideal for the brain’s neurotransmitters. Apart from being rich in omega-3 acids, choline is also rich in omega-6 fatty acids.

As beneficial as eggs are, they can cause allergic reactions in some infants. It is recommended you wait for 9 months before introducing it to their diets. In fact, egg whites should be avoided till they turn a year old.

Avocados

Avocado is rich in unsaturated fat which is known to increase the flow of blood to the brain. It contains many vitamins and minerals. It also contributes to brain development and is easy to administer because of its soft texture and also contains oleic acid which is popular for its protection of the myelin. It is the myelin in the brain that helps it transport information at high speed.

In fact, some argue that the fat composition found in this fruit is almost like that of breast milk, which makes it an excellent solid to feed your child after weaning them. What is more, it contains B-complex vitamins, which are needed for the health of the brain, muscles and the nervous system.

Oatmeal

Oatmeal contains a rich amount of zinc, vitamin E and B-complex. Children who are fed with a reasonable portion of it every day tend to perform better in school activities that are related to spatial memory. The fibre content helps in maintaining the energy level needed for maximum performance in children. Generally, whole grains help children focus better through the vitality it provides them. It also contains folate which is essential for optimal functioning of the brain. A plate of oatmeal a day will leave your child vitalized to take on both academic and extracurricular activities.

Blueberries

Blueberries contain a rich amount of vitamin C which helps improve the memory of children. In fact, all berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, dark cherries, and so on) are known to generally improve the cognitive functioning of a child’s brain. They are easy to incorporate into their diet. Simply pack a couple into their lunch boxes everyday and you have your kids eating a healthy ration of these awesome fruits.

Apart from being good for digestion, blueberries contain enough fibre and sugar which provide children with the vitality they need to perform well at school and at home. There is also a significant amount of antioxidants and omega-3 acid in them. There are many ways you can serve them ranging from simple snacks to smoothies. Go for the deep coloured berries because the deeper the colour, the more nutrition you get from them.

Lean beef

This is a meat alternative which is rich in iron and helps in improving memory. Lean beef helps maintain the right amount of energy needed for school activities and also in focusing better. It is also recommended for its zinc content. A low zinc content in the body is one of the leading causes of poor memory in children; same with iron. Iron deficiency is known to cause cognitive and attention deficiency. To ensure your kids get the best of lean beef, ensure you dry cook it. This reduces the loss of minerals common with cooking stock. However, if you are going to cook with water, use the stock to prepare other dishes so they can get the best of the nutrients available.

Nuts & seeds

Most nuts, like walnuts, are naturally rich in omega-3 acid and they contain an incredible amount of monosaturated fats which are great for the child’s brain. They are described as being brain-accommodating as they provide much of the nutrients needed for a healthy brain. Nuts have a significant amount of vitamin E, which protects the child from intellectual decline while the zinc content helps build stronger memory.

Studies have revealed that seeds are good in improving the mood and protecting the nervous system. There are many ways to serve them to your kids and peanut butter is at the top of the list. Combining nuts with olive oil and greens is one easy way to provide your child with unlimited nutrients for his mental health. However, you need to be mindful of their intake so that your child doesn’t gain too much weight.

Conclusion

Growing bodies need a lot of nutrients and so do growing brains. Your child’s mental development should be as important as his physical growth. Natural foods offer the right amount of nutrients needed for a full cognitive functioning of the child. This is ideal as they are free of the adverse effects associated with other methods of improving your child’s mental performance.

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