Brain Food for Young Minds
As well as being a tutor/teacher/mentor, I am also a registered nutritionist. So, I put together this list of brain foods that may help, if your child is having problems concentrating or if his/her energy is low.
Eggs: The protein in eggs helps children concentrate. Scramble some up into a whole-wheat tortilla.
Whole Grains: Our bodies need a steady supply of glucose (sugar) for energy, and our little ones are no different. In addition, the fibre in whole grains will help prevent the blood sugar spikes experienced with non-whole grain foods like white bread.
Berries: Berries contain high levels of antioxidants, especially vitamin C. Remember, the darker the berry the more nutrition in the berry (i.e. blueberries).
Greek Yogurt: Packed with protein, but don't choose the fat-free kind. You want the fat, as it is important for brain health. In addition, fat-free usually means more sugar. Top off the yogurt with high fibre cereals, dark chocolate chips or blueberries.
Greens: Full of folate and vitamins. Kale has actually been shown to help new brain cells grow. Remember, if you're giving your child a salad for lunch, don't forget to add some protein. Protein is satiating, so a salad all on its own won't keep your child feeling full.
Fish: Salmon is rich in omega 3 and vitamin D. Omega 3 is great for brain growth and function. While tuna does contain omega 3 and vitamin D, salmon is the better choice.
Nuts & Seeds: Packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals. Studies have shown that they may actually help boost your mood. Peanut butter contains thiamin to help the brain and nervous system.
Colourful Veggies: Packed with antioxidants. Try some baked sweet potato wedges or some carrots with dip.
Oatmeal: Oatmeal provides excellent fuel for the brain. It is protein and fibre-rich. A study showed that children who ate sweetened oatmeal in the morning actually performed better on memory-related school tasks that those who ate sugary cereals.
Apples: We all crave sweets when we are feeling sluggish, even our kids. Munching on an apple will provide the sweetness and boost energy. But leave the skin on because that's where all the good stuff is. The fibre in the skin will help prevent blood sugar spikes.
Say yes to brain power!
Mother. Wife. Sister. Friend. Teacher. Tutor. Nutritionist. Mentor. Speaker.