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BRAIN FOOD FOR KIDS
Salmon(fatty fish) is one of the best sources of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and both of these are essential for the growth of the brain of kids. In fact, recent research has also shown that “people who get more of these fatty acids in their diet have sharper minds and do better at mental skills tests.”
“While tuna is also a source of omega-3s, it’s not a rich source like salmon”, Giancoli tells WebMD.
“Tuna is definitely a good source of lean protein, but because it’s so lean it’s not very high in omega-3s like canned salmon is,” Giancoli tells WebMD. Also, albacore “white” tuna contains more amount of mercury than canned light tuna, it is advised to eat no more than 6 ounces of albacore tuna weekly.
Try eating more salmon:
You can also try making a salmon salad for sandwiches — canned salmon mixed with reduced-fat mayo, chopped celery, raisins, and carrots. Can also add a little dijon mustard if u want to. Try avoiding tuna sandwiches.
Whole grain bread is also a brain food.
Moreover, you can add canned salmon to creamy broccoli soup along with frozen chopped broccoli which can provide extra nutrition and soft texture. “Boxed soups make this an easy meal, and are generally low in fat and calories”, Giancoli says.
Go for organic boxed soups present in the health food section.
“Try salmon patties using 14 oz. canned salmon, 1 lb. frozen chopped spinach (thawed and drained), 1/2 onion (finely chopped), 2 garlic cloves (pressed), 1/2 teaspoon salt, pepper to taste. Combine ingredients. Mix well. Form into small balls. Heat olive oil in a pan, flatten spinach balls with a spatula. Cook over medium heat. Lastly, serve over brown rice (instant or frozen).”
“Eggs are well-known as a great protein source — but the egg yolks are also packed with choline, which helps memory development.
Eat more eggs: Send your child off to school with a grab-and-go breakfast egg burrito. Try breakfast for dinner one night a week — scrambled eggs and toast. Make your own Egg McMuffin at home: just put a fried egg on top of a toasted English muffin, lastly, topped with a slice of low-fat cheese.”
“Peanuts and peanut butter are a good source of vitamin E, a potent antioxidant that protects nervous membranes — plus thiamin to help the brain and nervous system use glucose for energy,” says Giancoli.
Eat more peanut butter
To make something different from a peanut nutter, make a peanut butter and banana sandwich. Dip apple slices in peanut butter. Or lastly, give a topping of a handful of peanuts on your favorite salad.
“The brain needs a constant supply of glucose — and whole grains provide that in spades. The fiber helps regulate the release of glucose into the body”, Giancoli explains. “Whole grains also have B-vitamins, which nourish a healthy nervous system.”
Eat more whole grains:
You can easily find whole-grain cereals. Whole grain should be the prior element in your diet. Also, to make something interesting, try whole-wheat couscous for dinner along with cranberries. You can also use low-fat popcorn for a fun snack.
Whole-grain bread is important for sandwiches. Go for whole-grain tortillas and chips for wraps, quesadillas, and snacks.
Furthermore, “Oats are one of the most familiar hot cereals for kids and a very nutritious (grain for the brain),” says Sarah Krieger, MPH, RD, LD/N, a St Petersburg, Fla. consultant, and ADA spokeswoman. “Oats provide excellent energy or fuel for the brain that kids need first thing in the morning.”
Since oats are rich in fiber, they keep a child’s brain full all day. Oats also are excellent sources of B-vitamins, vitamin E, potassium, and zinc which make our bodies and brains function at full capacity.
Eat more oats:
Furthermore, have a topping of anything interesting to a hot oatmeal – applesauce and cinnamon, sliced almonds and a drizzle of honey, dried fruit and soy milk, fresh banana, and a dash of nutmeg with skim milk.
Put a handful of dry oats into a smoothie. It will also make it thick– or into muffin, pancake, waffle, or a granola bar recipe.
simple snack: “1 cup peanut butter, ½ cup honey, 1 cup dry oats, ½ cup dry milk powder. Mix it up with your hands — then put a tablespoon between 2 apple or pear slices for a fun and different sandwich!”
blueberries, strawberries, cherries, blackberries. “In general, the more intense the color, the more nutrition in the berries,” Krieger says. “Berries boast high levels of antioxidants, especially vitamin C, which may help prevent cancer.”
It is also proven that the extracts of blueberries and strawberries help in increasing memory. “But eat the real thing to get a more nutritious package,” Krieger says. “The seeds from berries are also a good source of omega-3”
Eat more berries:
Indeed, “Add berries to veggies that may need a flavor boost — like sliced sweet cherries with broccoli or strawberries with green beans. Toss berries into a green salad. Add chopped berries to a jar of salsa for an excellent flavor surprise.”
More berry ideas: “Add berries to yogurt, hot or cold cereal, or dips. For a light dessert, top a mound of berries with nonfat whipped topping”, Krieger suggests.
Beans have energy from protein and complex carbs — and fiber along with lots of vitamins and minerals, Krieger says. “These are excellent brain food since they keep a child’s energy and thinking level at peak all afternoon if they enjoy them with lunch.”
“pinto beans contain more omega 3 fatty acids than other beans — specifically ALA, another of the omega-3’s important for brain growth and function”, says Krieger.
Eat more beans:
You can sprinkle beans over salad. And top it with salsa. Try mashing vegetarian beans and spreading them on a tortilla. Mash or fill a pita pocket with beans along with shredded lettuce and low-fat cheese.
“Tomatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, carrots, spinach — vegetables with rich, deep color are the best sources of antioxidants that keep brain cells strong and healthy”, Thayer says.
Eat more veggies:
Try making sweet potato fries: Cut up in wedges or sticks. Spray them with vegetable oil cooking spray and then bake them in the oven (400 degrees, 20 minutes or until they start to brown).
pumpkin muffins: Mix 1 15-ounce can of pumpkin with cake or muffin mix. Then stir the two ingredients completely.
Baby carrots and tiny tomatoes can be fitted perfectly in the lunch box . try spinach salad with lots of things in them — like blueberries, strawberries, sliced almonds. Try sneaking all sorts of chopped veggies into soups, spaghetti sauce, and stews.
Milk & Yogurt
Dairy foods are rich with protein and B-vitamins which are important for growth of brain tissue, neurotransmitters, and enzymes. “Milk and yogurt also provide a bigger punch with both protein and carbohydrates – the preferred source of energy for the brain,” Thayer says.
“Recent research suggests that children and teens need 10 times more the recommended dose of vitamin D — a vitamin that benefits the neuromuscular system and the overall life cycle of human cells.”
Indeed eat more dairy: Low-fat milk over cereal — and calcium- and vitamin D-fortified juices — are easy ways to get these essential nutrients. Cheese sticks are great snacks.
Low-fat yogurt parfaits are also fun. In a tall glass, layer yogurt with berries (fresh, frozen, or dried) and chopped nuts (almonds or walnuts), Thayer suggests.
Iron is an important mineral that helps kids remain active and energised the whole day. Lean beef counts for one of the best absorbed sources of iron. In fact, just 1 ounce per day helps the body absorb iron from other sources. The zinc in beef helps with memory.
“For vegetarians, black bean and soy burgers are great iron-rich meatless options. Beans are an important source of nonheme iron — a type of iron that needs vitamin C to be absorbed. Eat tomatoes, red bell pepper, orange juice, strawberries, and other “Cs” with beans to get the most iron.”
Eat more iron:
go for grilled kebobs with beef chunks and veggies for dinner. Try to stir-fry a bit of beef with colourful veggies. Give a topping of salsa or tomato slice to grilled black bean
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