It takes more than books to stay smart. As the brain starts developing in the first three years of a child’s life, and continues to develop over time, good nutrition and health is key to optimal development. “What they eat affects focus and cognitive skills,” says psychiatrist Drew Ramsey from Columbia University, New York. Here are four things that aren’t just good to eat, but make for great food for thought.
Leafy Green Vegetables
These pack a punch for any kind of nutrition. For the brain, the high folate and vitamin content in those leafy greens help keep the brain healthy while giving a necessary boost to memory. Pile up on greens such as malunggay, kang kong, and bell peppers. Win pickier eaters over by being creative pair ingsome leafy greens with fruit to make a smoothie, or fry them up from time to time as a tasty snack.
Fish is rich in vitamin D and omega-3s, known to be big brain boosters. Recent studies have observed that omega3s help with brain tissue development, while Vitamin D aids in nerve growth and overall brain function – which simply means that kids stay sharp and think fast. Get the most out of these vitamins with fish such as salmon, tuna, and sardines which are rich in omega-3s. If your child isn’t one to enjoy fish fried or in a big bowl of sinigang, you can add it to your child’s favorite pasta sauce or roll them into yummy fish balls in place of the traditional meat balls.
Nuts and Seeds
These little things are just packed with vitamins, especially Vitamin E. These can help your more tempremental children get a little more even-tempered, and has been found to help the nervous system out in many different ways. Spread a little more peanut butter onto toast, make a trail mix with a balanced amount of dried fruit and some chocolate, or crush it into pesto sauce for an unforgettable meal.
Many studies over the years have shown that lycopene in tomatoes is a powerful antioxidant, which helps prevent cell damage. They also help with the good kind of fat, the kind that the brain needs to keep working properly. You’re going to want to sauce up your brain food with classics such as the party spaghetti or a slice of tomato with morning silogs, or have your kids with adventurous taste buds try tomato as a juice or shake.
photo from www.morguefile.com