Top 10 Foods to Keep Your Child
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March 25, 2013, last updated July 17, 2014
By Louise Carr, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist






As difficult as it can be sometimes to get your kids to eat
healthy foods, good nutrition for children is essential. Healthy
eating in childhood benefits proper growth and development
and helps prevent health problems in later life such as iron
deficiency, high blood pressure, diabetes, cardiovascular
disease, osteoporosis, obesity and dental problems according
to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But what
does healthy eating mean? What foods should you put in the
shopping cart to keep your kids healthy?


Basics of Healthy Eating for Children

Children aged two years and above should be chowing down
on fruit, vegetables, fat-free and low-fat dairy, and whole
grains according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Dietary
Guidelines for Americans, 2010.

Kids’ intake of solid fats, sodium, cholesterol, refined grains
and added sugar should be curbed. If you choose lean meat
and chicken, eggs, fruit, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat
dairy your kids, like you, are more likely to enjoy eating these
foods. But it seems our children are not getting the nutrients
they need.

What Are Our Children Eating?

Most US kids don’t eat the recommended 2½ cups to 6½ cups
of fruits and vegetables or the 2-3 ounces of whole grains each
day, and consume more than the recommended maximum daily
intake of sodium (1,500–2,300 mg) every day, according to the
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service.

Children and adolescents drink too much soda --- boys aged 12
to 19 drink an average of 22 ounces of soda  a day.  They don't
drink enough milk and water --- boys drink about 10 ounces a
day, less than half of the amount of sodas they drink.

Girls are not doing much better. They drink an average of 14
ounces of soda and 6 ounces of milk a day, according to a 2006
study from the Center for Food, Nutrition and Agriculture,
University of Maryland, and eat too many empty calories from
sugars and solid fats.

How can we turn this disastrous trend around? What exactly
should we put on our children's plates to improve their health?
Which foods bring the best health benefits for growing
children?

We looked at the scientific evidence to give you the top 10
healthy foods for children. Some of these you may know, while
others will come as a complete surprise:




























1.
Kids Should Drink More Milk, Less Fruit Juice

Make sure your kids are getting enough milk. Children aged
two to eight should drink two cups of fat-free or low-fat milk a
day.

Children aged eight and over should drink three cups of milk a
day, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2005,
issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S.
Department of Health and Human Services.

Children who avoid drinking milk are at increased risk for bone
fractures, says a 2004 study from the University of Otago
Medical School, Dunedin, New Zealand. The medical histories of
50 children were compared to a birth cohort of 1,000 children
– children who avoided milk reported more fractures before
puberty, especially forearm fractures.

Milk contains protein, and of course it is liquid. Both of these
attributes help to control your child's appetite, making him or
her less likely to crave sweets, snacks and empty calories.

When milk is absent from your child's diet, he or she may
compensate by drinking a lot of fruit juice. And this can cause
major developmental problems.  

Children under five years of age who drank 12 fl oz of fruit
juice or more a day were shorter and more overweight than
those who drank less, according to a 1997 study from Mary
Imogene Bassett Research Institute, Cooperstown, NY.

What if your child is allergic to milk or is lactose intolerant? You
may find that other milk is better tolerated than
cow's milk,
such as goat's milk or soy milk.  

2.
Eating Salad, Fruit and Vegetables Linked to a Higher IQ

Your child's lifetime IQ may not be set at birth. New research
has found that a child's IQ can change with proper diet.

Young children who eat a diet rich in fruit, vegetables and salad
are more likely to have a higher IQ later in life, according to a
2011 study from Bristol University, UK.

Researchers found 20 per cent of children with the worst diet
at the age of three demonstrated an IQ score five points lower,
on average, than children who ate the best diet when they
reached the age of eight.

Looking at the 4,000 children studied, researchers saw that
every one point increase in the healthiness scale – more fruit,
vegetables and salad – resulted in a 1.2 increase in IQ. Even if
children’s diets improve, the negative effects on  IQ can last a
lifetime, according to researchers, so it is best to start early.

3.
Feed Your Child Fruit to Lower Asthma Risk

Children eating three or more portions of fruit a week have an
11-14 percent lower risk of  developing severe asthma, eczema
and rhino conjunctivitis according to the 2013 International
Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC).

The study was based on surveys of 6-7-year-old and 13-14-
year-old children in over 50 countries and scientists also
concluded that children who ate fast food three or more times
a week were more likely to develop severe asthma.

4.
Yogurt for Kids Prevents Cavities

Yogurt is a convenient way to increase your child’s nutrient
intake, and many kids enjoy the taste of it. Children who eat
yogurt four times a week are 22 percent less likely to develop a
tooth cavity than children who eat yogurt less than once a
week, according to a 2010 study from the University of Tokyo
and Fukuoka University, Japan.

The study looked at 2,000 three-year-old children and thought
that the protein in yogurt acts as a seal against harmful acids.

While you're at it, top the yogurt with strawberries.
Strawberries help to protect tooth enamel, according to a study
conducted in 2000 at Southwestern Oklahoma State University.

5.
Eating Breakfast Makes Children Better at Math


Continue reading   page 1   page 2


Related:
When Your Child Is  a Picky Eater -Causes  and Top 10 Natural
Remedies

My Child Has Blue Lips-Causes and Cures

Bowel Movements Indicate Your Health

Stop Baby Crying-Top 10 Natural Remedies for Colic

Itchy Skin in Children-Natural Remedies

Ideal Weight Charts for Children of Different Heights

Sugar Content in Baby Foods-A Directory

Encopresis-When Your Child Holds In Their Bowels,a  
University of Virginia Report

Protect Your Child Against Schizophrenia


Foods That Shrink Your Waist / Size 6 Weight Chart / Size 8
Weight Chart / 10 Small Changes to Make You More Active /
Exercise At Home to Lose Weight / Exercises That Speed Up
Your Metabolism/Are Diet Sodas Bad for Your Health?/ Does
Drinking Cold Water Burn Calories?/ Size 6 Weight Chart-How
Much Do You Have to Lose to Get Into a Size 6  / Simple Diet to
Lose 10 Pounds/ Does Coffee Help You Lose Weight?


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