To help your children perform better in school, providing proper nutrition is a must. But this could be very challenging to every parent since most children are picky eaters and they don’t know what they really want to eat.
Nevertheless, to ensure a balanced meal for your kids, don’t forget to give your children the following food groups:
Since your child is growing, protein is a valuable nutrient for kids. According to Jessica Crandall, a registered dietician nutritionist, protein makes the immune system stronger and it helps make you feel full after eating.
So, if you have a sickly child, protein should be always served on the table. Among the best sources of protein are eggs, milk, fish, shelled-foods, soya, nuts, beans, pork and chicken.
Fruits are also essential for a child’s proper nutrition. They are naturally rich in fibers which help combat heart illnesses and even cancer. They also contain vitamin C which promotes the faster healing of cuts and wounds – which children often get because of their playfulness.
Aside from these, fruits are generally low in fat, sodium and calories. So, if your child is suffering from obesity, fruits are definitely great food choices. You could feed your child with berries, apples, bananas, oranges, pineapples, pears and avocados.
Just like fruits, eating vegetables would help your children avoid obesity because vegetables also contain fibers and are low in fat. They also contain vitamins A, C and E which helps your child develop a better eyesight, stronger immune system and protect the body against toxins.
But compared to fruits, you would find that it is harder to make children eat veggies. To encourage them eat more vegetables, have them help you create a vegetable dish in the kitchen. Based on studies, children are more likely to eat food that they make.
For a selection of vegetables, you may feed them with sweet bell peppers, potatoes, carrots, squash, corns, tomatoes, broccolis, cucumbers, spinach and peas.
If you want your children to develop strong bones and teeth, serve them with dairy products. Foods in the dairy group are rich in calcium which is used for improving the body’s bone mass. Aside from calcium, dairy products also contain protein, vitamin D and potassium.
Vitamin D helps regulate the absorption of calcium and phosphorus in the body, which helps maintain strong bones and teeth. On the other hand, potassium helps regulate the body’s blood pressure. For a great source of these nutrients, give your child milk, cheese, yogurt or soy drinks.
Grains and cereals
Grains and cereals help with the weight management of your child since they contain dietary fibers. They also contain B-vitamins such as folate, riboflavin, niacin and thiamin which provide the body with extra energy. Grains and cereals also contain minerals such as iron and magnesium which helps prevent your child from having anemia and build strong bones.
Among the healthiest grains that you could include in your child’s diet are oats, barley, whole wheat, brown rice, quinoa and corn.
Are you feeding your child these food groups? If you aren’t yet, it’s time to revamp your meal plans and serve your child with a healthier and balanced diet.