Brain Development

Foods that Aid in Brain Development

10 Foods that Aid Brain Development

Undernutrition can impede behavioral and cognitive development as well as future educability and reproductive health, says the World Bank. Its effects could be enduring as brain development occurs almost exclusively in the intrauterine and first two years of the child. During the pre-school years an attentive parent can know if the child's brain development is in proportion to his age, by assessing the child development milestones achieved by the child. It is important to breastfeed for the first few months and then be in touch with the toddler's growing nutritional needs so as to be able to provide a balanced meal for optimum growth.

What Your Child Needs to Eat

  1. Whole Grains: Your child's ability to focus and concentrate comes from a steady supply of energy provided by glucose in the bloodstream. Whole grains have low glycaemic index which facilitates steady release of glucose in the blood, keeping your child alert throughout the day.

  2. Fish Oils: Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are essential for brain development and can only be obtained through diet, as the body is ill equipped to create it. The most effective Omega-3 fats occur naturally in fish oil as EPA and DHA. If you are raising your child to be a vegetarian, you can substitute with supplements like Enfagrow A+ that contain the important fats essential for your child's brain development.

  3. Berries: Blueberries, blackcurrants, strawberries, all are rich in potassium, Vitamin C and anti-oxidants all of which have brain boosting characteristics. They are said to increase mental agility and improve memory, aiding not just in achieving child development milestones, but also to preserve brain health in adults.

  4. Yogurt: Full of Proteins, Calcium, Carbohydrates, Zinc and Vitamin B, yogurt is a super food that helps in body and brain development.

  5. Tomatoes: Given the amount of population your child breathes in from living in metropolitan cities, it is important to ensure that he receives enough anti-oxidants to fight the free radicals that will attack his brain. The lycopene in tomatoes are ideal for this purpose.

  6. Leafy Greens: B6, B12 and folic acid are all essential ingredients that aid in brain development. Having spinach and lettuce leaves raw will help to fulfill the nutritional needs of your child in just a few bites.

  7. Pumpkin seeds: A study published in The American journal of clinical nutrition states how zinc deficiency can lead to deficits in neuropsychological functioning, thereby delaying child development milestones. Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of zinc and just including a handful of them in everyday diet could be very beneficial.

  8. Broccoli: It is difficult to meet the body's need for Vitamin K and Broccoli is one ready source. This can help in increasing brain functioning and bring about improvement in cognitive abilities.

  9. Mustard seeds: This has vitamin B3, which is known to regulate blood flow. It is also a source of vitamin A, iron, calcium and magnesium. Mustard seeds help fight infection, improve immunity and ease symptoms of asthma, chest congestion and cold.

  10. Nuts: They are a great source of Vitamin E which helps to keep the mind agile and the memory sharp.