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TOPIC: 10 Brain Foods for Kids

10 Brain Foods for Kids 01 Jun 2013 21:34 #184

10 Brain Foods for Kids
Posted by Anne Krueger reviewed by Patricia Quinn, MD

As fast as children whiz from classroom to activity to home and back again, their brains are just as actively and dramatically growing and changing.

"These years are critical for brain development, and what they eat affects focus and cognitive skills," psychiatrist Drew Ramsey, MD, coauthor of The Happiness Diet, says.

Food is one of many factors that affect a child's brain development.

The following 10 foods can help kids stay sharp all day long, and affect brain development well into the future.

1. Eggs

Eating a high-nutrient protein like eggs (which have nutrients including choline, omega-3s, zinc, and lutein) will help kids concentrate, Beth Saltz, RD, says.

How to Serve It: Fold scrambled eggs into a whole-grain tortilla for a filling breakfast or late-afternoon snack. "The protein-carb combo tides kids over until the next meal with no sugar-induced energy crash," Saltz says.

2. Greek Yogurt

Fat is important to brain health, says Laura Lagano, RD. A full-fat Greek yogurt (which has more protein that other yogurts) can help keep brain cell membranes flexible, helping them to send and receive information.

How to Serve It: Pack Greek yogurt in lunch with some fun mix-ins: cereal with at least 3 grams of fiber and blueberries for a dose of nutrients called polyphenols.

Or add a few dark chocolate chips. Polyphenols in cocoa are thought to keep the mind sharp by hiking brain blood flow.

3. Greens

Full of folate and vitamins, spinach and kale are part of a healthy diet linked to lower odds of getting dementia later in life. "Kale contains sulforaphane, a molecule that has detoxifying abilities, and diindolylmethane, which helps new brain cells grow," says Ramsey, coauthor of 50 Shades of Kale.

How to Serve It:
- Whip spinach into smoothies for snack time.
- Add it to omelets.
- Saute it at dinner drizzled with olive oil (the dash of fat helps your body absorb vitamins).
- Make chips out of kale: Cut kale from stems/ribs, drizzle with olive oil and a bit of salt, and bake.

...

Continue reading: http://www.webmd.com/add-adhd/childhood-adhd/features/brain-foods-kids
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