The Nine nutritional gems we should always include in mealsApril 14, 2020
As a mother of two active and growing kids, I have always remained inclined towards reading the labels of food I buy, picking up vegetables wisely from the vendor and educating myself on kids’ nutrition.
Nutrients are compounds that nourish the body and aid in its growth, development, immunity, and good health. To boost kids’ immunity and promise them a healthy life, I ensure including the nine nutritional gems in their diet. These nutrients boost energy, strength, and act as building blocks for my kids.
Here are the nine nutritional gems we should always include in our meals.
‘Proteins’ are the building blocks of the body. Protein helps in building up of muscles and strength in the body while keeping us active all day long. It is essential to include at least 0.8 g per kg of body weight. Food like beans, fish, eggs, nuts, grains, meat, tofu, etc are high on protein and can be easily added to breakfasts or lunches to boost body energy and muscle development.
Vitamin A is a nutritional organic compound, mostly found in spinach, broccoli, sweet potato, eggs, carrots, apricots, etc. that is important for the body growth, development, and maintenance of the immune system and good vision.
I ensure that my kids’ meals include enough vegetables, and fruits together with fresh fruit juices and milk.
Found in oranges, papaya, kale, kiwi, tomatoes, strawberries, etc., Vitamin C is one of the vital nutrients for us. It acts as an antioxidant and helps protect the cells from damage caused by the free radicals. Adequate intake of Vitamin C ensures a healthy immune system, a lower risk of chronic diseases, a healthy digestive system and prevention from iron deficiencies. Vitamin C is the perfect nutrition to include for immunity Indian kids.
I try to make a fruit salad for my kids and it is one of their favorite mid-day snacks to eat. I have a special bowl and forks for this meal making it an event that they look forward to.
A fat-soluble Vitamin and a great antioxidant – Vitamin E plays a vital role in the boosting of the immune system, metabolic rate and proper functioning of many organs in the body. Extensively found in almonds, peanuts, sunflower seeds, asparagus, avocado, spinach, collard greens, etc.
Adding soaked almonds in our daily diet together with wholesome meals including vegetables, fruits, and nuts takes care of my family’s Vitamin E needs. My kids love peanut butter and jam – and it makes for a nutritious breakfast too!
Benefitting the central nervous system, Vitamin B6 is the nutrient for the brain! It produces neurotransmitters like serotonin, etc. that helps boost brain performance, memory function, etc.
Including bread, soya beans, wholegrain cereals, brown rice, oatmeal, and chicken in the meals ensures that the family is always happy and brain-healthy!
Boosting the production of red blood cells and DNA – Vitamin B12 is one of the most important vitamins for the body. While there are very few vegetarian sources of B12, poultry, and dairy products promise an appropriate intake of the vitamin.
To uplift the health and body system of my kids, I ensure that the meals include cereals, milk, and dairy, soybeans, and tofu.
Helping the body produce new cells, boost growth and development – Folic Acid is one of the vital ingredients for all, especially for pregnant women. During my pregnancy days, I had been on a folic acid-rich diet together with supplements for the healthy growth of my babies. As my kids are grown now, I ensure that I include enough peas, dried beans, beets, broccoli, spinach, etc in their diet to boost their growth and development.
Copper is an essential nutrient for the body that helps maintain bones’ health, blood vessels, nerves, and immune function. As more leafy greens, dark chocolate, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, etc go into the diet – the body gets enough copper to boost the functioning of the blood vessels, stronger bones and a healthy immune system to fight against viruses and infections.
We can go for weeks without food, but never without water! Dehydration causes fatigue, weakness and a disturbed body system. Water is the essence of life and crucial to keep our body system working.
While I prepare orange, cucumber and mint leaves infused water for the kids to find water tasty to keeping a check on our water intake – I ensure that everyone stays hydrated!
While I do my best to include all the nutritional gems in my kids’ diet, sometimes I do wish there was a magic wand that will tell me that my kids are getting the nutrition they need to stay healthy and protected from infections.
I may not have a magic wand but I do have PediaSure, with its composition of 37 nutrients that help not only with growth and development but also in boosting immunity. Adding PediaSure to their daily diet ensures that even if the food isn’t planned around the vitamins, my kids are never short of the essential nutrients that are important for their optimum growth and development.
And since I have been introduced to this magic wand, it has done wonders for my stress levels! You should try it too. It’s time we add nutritional gems and their value to everything that our kids binge on and lead a happy and healthy life.
Copyright: © Ruchi Verma
Disclaimer – This article is an advisory piece. Before you manipulate your diet habit kindly consult a medical practitioner or nutritionist.
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