Nutrition during the early years of development

zoefruitbasket Nutrition during the early years of developmentThe human brain is particularly susceptible to the effects of poor nutrition during the early years of development, and most preschool diets are either average or impoverished.[1]

Young brains need many nutrients for learning. Food additives and Deficiencies in some nutrients have been linked to ADD and ADHD.

Some guidelines that can help are:
No Soft Drinks – At least till the age of 5, and then only as an occasional treat. Replace Soft drinks with Water, Natural Fruit Juices (Without corn Syrup or Fructose Sweeteners), and Low fat Milk.
Limit Potato Chips, Donuts, Pop-Tarts, and Cookies. These should be a treat and healthier alternatives like whole grain pretzels or baked chips, fruits like bananas, sliced apples, grapes, and watermelon are ideal snack choices.

Natures Path has some better snack options for Toaster pastries, Cookies, and Chips.

Stick with whole foods, real foods, and reduce the manufactured processed ones.

Nutritional supplements can help to avoid vitamin and mineral deficiencies, but you should try to get most of these thru the food your child eats. Try this online Balanced Meal Planner to ensure that you are selecting enough foods from the major food groups.

Children have their favorite foods and sometimes it seems like it is next to impossible to get them to eat anything other than mac and cheese or PB&J one way to get your Child to eat healthy foods is to hide them in their current favorites.
For tips for some simple strategies for hiding healthy foods in kids’ favorite meals checkout The Sneaky Chef

Resources cited
[1] M. Georgieff and R. Rao, “The Role of Nutrition in Cognitive Development,” in Handbook of Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, eds. C. Nelson and M. Luciana (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2001

Article submited to DIY Father with thanks from an outside source

5 Responses to Nutrition during the early years of development

  1. Curt says:

    I can agree in principle with this article, however, I cannot agree with some of the specifics.

    Things such as low-fat milk. Mothers milk contains fat – are you going to make it reduced fat? The fat si there for a reason and childhood obesity and other childrens diseases that are so prevalent are NOT due to the fat in natural food. OK, let me back up a little. Fat will store heavy metals that can lead to problems and the way our food is grown today THAT is a big concern. And another problem is all the steroids and anti-biotics given to our milk producers and meat products.

    As for Natures Path (et al) toaster pastries and such read the labels – there is VERY little in the way of nutrition in them: * for Vitamin A, * for Vitamin X, 2%, 3%, vitamin fortified, vitamin such and such added! They aren’t much better.

    Now for USDA Organic Certification – the rules used to be very strict on what was allowed to be organic – it either was all natural, nothing added. Today? It has been greatly relaxed to allow Mega-Corp to claim that their product is Organic – it is hogwash! Can you really believe that the growth in truly organic farmland has been sufficient to support all these mega-corps truly going organic?

    Find a local farmers market, get to know the people there. You will find better quality food and it will be Thousands of Miles Fresher.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Keeping a healthy diet can be a very hard thing to do and you need to have a strong will and determination to make a change in your life. This is not a problem for some of us, but many people need help in order to change and that is why I recommend to them: visit a health consultant and if you start something, keep in touch with him at least once a week.

  3. Roger says:

    I wonder how many parents have the time to pay attention to these recommendations? I am guessing that a high percentage of kids don’t get the nutrition they need, not because their parents can’t afford it but because their parents are not well informed about good nutrition or don’t have the time to face this task every day. I think health nutrition stores would be a great help for parents in this situation.

  4. Danna says:

    I didn’t realized that nutrition has such a big impact on children leading things till the risk of ADD or ADHD. The first time I heard that from my chiropractor I didn’t really took it serious, I thought he’s just doing some doctor talk, he was obviously right, I will get more involved in this, this is the best thing to do.

  5. jeffsmith says:

    Great article plus nice guidelines for the parents who have small kids :)

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