Friday, January 20, 2012

Brain Food for Kids: Eat Your Greens, Fish and Eggs

Brassica oleracea var. gemmifera English: Brus...
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Lutein: Good for your eyes but new research also shows that that this phytochemical is needed in the infant and child's brain for memory and learning. 
Where to find it:
Kale, Spinach (cooked), Chard, Greens, Eggs, Romaine Lettuce, Broccoli, Zuccini, Brussel Sprouts
Check out this website for other sources

Iron: I was surprised to learn when Olivia was at a well child visit that iron is needed to assist in normal infant brain growth.(Makes sense once you think about it, but I hadn't) An infant or child who is anemic for an extended period of time will not learn and progress as they should. Iron is also needed for energy and concentration. Eat iron with Vitamin C for better absorption.
Where to find it:
Lentils, Beans (legumes such as black beans, kidney beans), Spinach, Olives, Turmeric, Thyme, Chard, Asparagus

Choline: A member of the B family has been shown in recent research through Duke University to aid in memory cell production throughout childhood. So next time you find your toddler eating butter by the handfuls in the pantry (recent event at my house), let them eat away.
Where to find it:
Egg yolk, butter, potatoes, peanuts, cauliflower, oats, lentils, brussel sprouts

Fat: The brain is around 60 percent fat. Your little one needs lots of the right kind of fats to grow their brain properly. 
Where to find it:
Your healthiest source of fats is going to be Omega 3's like DHA, found in things like fish (salmon, sardines, halibut, shrimp, cod, tuna), grass fed beef, grass fed butter, walnuts, flax seeds, eggs, chia seeds and hazelnuts.

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