How do you raise children in the increasingly competitive world? Parents want babies who have a healthy body and a competitive metal edge. The complex interplay of genes, socioeconomic background, culture, and environment impacts on a child’s intellectual development and academic performance. But his mental growth will get a definite boost with better nutrition and adequate consumption of key nutrients. Start them while they are young. A child’s brain starts to develop in the womb. If the mother doesn’t get proper nourishment or takes stimulants like alcohol and some drugs, his brain may be negatively affected. After birth, his brain continues to develop as he grows, and nutrition is a key factor in helping him achieve his optimum cognitive abilities.
Research into brain formation revealed how the attention and problem-solving capabilities of children improved when fed infant formula enriched with omega-3 polyunsaturated acids. Scientists also believe that omega-3 in breast milk are one of the many reasons breastfed children perform better in IQ tests than babies raised on infant formula. Adequate amount of this nutrient seems especially critical for babies born prematurely. Walnuts and seafood are good for you. You may also consider supplements while you are pregnant, although excessive intakes of fish oil carry a few health risks such as impaired blood clotting. Consult your doctor first.
Iron also plays an important role in brain development. Many studies demonstrate that babies whose diets are deficient in iron perform poorly on developmental, cognitive and school performance levels. Iron deficiency is a widespread problem. It is also an urgent problem because it continues to impact on cognitive development later in life, even if iron levels in the body have been raised to normal. If you want to start your baby on regular foods, the best sources of iron are meats, whole grains, brown rice, whole-wheat products, and dark green vegetables.
So what can you do to make sure that you’ve done everything to improve your baby’s brain function? First of all, you need to breastfeed exclusively. The World Health Organization strongly recommends this for about the first six months of your child’s life. If this isn’t possible, feed him high quality infant formulas with the necessary nutrients for his growth. Remember, nutrients are most effectively absorbed as food than as supplements. Evidence shows that many nutrients are better absorbed if other vitamins are present. For instance, iron is better ingested when there is vitamin C in the system.
Make your effort work for the long haul. Take care not to be overzealous when introducing healthy foods to your children. Make him feel that you’re okay with giving him sweets every so often. Feeding and nurturing a bright child through good nutrition is not achieved by relying on supplements. Relax during feeding time and don’t insist on being too strict with what he eats. Moreover, it is important that you set a good example. Children grow up to be healthy eaters when they don’t feel deprived. Feel free to explore what he likes, but also make sure that you also have healthy food around when you start on regular foods.
By: (Bianca Miciano)