The nutrients your child needs, is quiet different from what your required daily intake might be. While you and your kids may need the same nutrients, the amount will vary. It is important that you have a fair idea of what the required nutrient intake is for your ids and deliver them their requirements accordingly.
The amount of physical activity that kids indulge in are much higher than that of adults, and therefore, they need more energy, and therefore more nutrients. As kids grow, and their level of physical activity increases, so will the requirement of nutrients.
A few parents use RDIs, which is the recommended daily intake to meet the nutrients requirements for their children. But, your child may need more. These requirements have been designed as guidelines so as to prevent diseases. The actual nutrient requirement for children is a lot more, in fact it is more than for adults as well, because of the amazing growth that happens during this time.
Children, when they are growing, need a lot of protein to grow, rather than for maintenance, whereas adults require protein strictly for maintenance. A child’s liver will hold enough glucose for four hours, this needs to be replenished in small and frequent bursts so as to keep blood sugar levels stable.
There are a variety of vitamins and minerals, which support growth and development during childhood. Zinc is one of the most important structural components of cells that are responsible for growing and it forms the basis so that they can function well. Zinc helps in increasing immunity, it helps balance blood sugar levels and one must also remember that those who have a low levels of zinc, may be prone to food allergies. The best sources for zinc are grass fed lamb and beef, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, brazil nuts and egg yolks.
Iron helps the body in many ways, it not only facilitates oxygen circulation, but it also keeps the immune system healthy and allows for energy production. Sources of foods that are iron rich include: lentils, grass fed red meat, egg yolks, spinach, raw cacao, asparagus and spirulina.
Calcium is very important for children, it is especially important between birth and puberty in growing children. During this stage, a kids bone structure grows 7 fold. 1000mg of Calcium per day is essential for strong bones and muscle function. When organizing meals for your children, ensure that the dairy products that you use are full fat and organic. However, if you may not be a big fan of dairy, you can always use alternatives like unhulled sesame seeds, sardines, almonds, flaxseeds, parsley, spinach, watercress and figs.
Speaking with a Registered Holistic Nutritionist is absolutely essential, to understand what your child needs. Depending on your child’s body type, eating habits, levels of activity and lifestyle, will they prescribe a diet that helps your child tremendously. In fact, you should try and get in touch with a homeopath too, so that you can learn about the great herbal alternatives for essential nutrients.