Early childhood is the most critical time for brain development.
The brain grows rapidly from birth to age 5 changing more than at any other period in a child’s life. That’s why now is the perfect time to encourage a diet chock-full of brain-boosting, nutrient-dense supergrains, supergreens, and superfruits.
A superfood is anynutrient-rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being. They contain many of the nutritional staples highly recommended for healthy early development like, Vitamins D, C, A, B6, B12.
But, superfoods also power the brain with nutrients proven to support neurological growth and early brain development.
Pediatricians recommend introducing cereal as early as 4-months-old. Offer your little one the appropriate amount of formula or breastmilk plus 2 tablespoons ofNurturMe: Organic Quinoa Cereals.
Quinoa is a great alternative to rice cereals and an excellent source of protein, zinc, folic acid, and iron. NurturMe Organic Quinoa Cereal is also rich in Vitamin C, D, B6, B12, is gluten, dairy, soy and egg-free making it tummy friendly.
Now that you’ve most likely introduced cereal, let’s add some flavor and a little texture!
Remember to introduce new foods one at a time to monitor for allergic reactions.
Mix up the breakfast menu with some yummy yogurt. Dairy is a common cause for upset baby bellies which is why we loveNurturMe's dairy-free yogurt alternative. This organic, plant-based yogurt option is still packed with healthy fat (from coconut cream) and protein for brain development; it’s just easier on a tiny tummy!
Avocado is a great first breakfast or lunchtime solid for your child. It is actually considered a nutrient-booster, meaning it’s both nutrient-dense and helps the body absorb important vitamins and minerals. Mango is another great brain food with nearly 18% of the recommended daily intake for folic acid. Beets are a lesser known superfood, but worthy of the designation, as they are packed with folic acid, iron and Vitamin C. Once you’ve expanded your little’s palette safely, you can give her a blend of delicious superfoods. Try one ofNurturMe’s Organic Powerblends. These power blends are a perfect brain-boosting meal option on-the-go!
Continue introducing more solids. Leafy greens, asparagus, brussels sprouts, and broccoli are rich in folic acid. Legumes are a great source of iron and fun finger foods!
You can begin feeding your baby small bits of chicken, beef, and fish as early as 7-months, but some parents hold off until a year. If your baby is exclusively breastfed, he or she might be less interested in meat until around a year of age, and that’s ok.
Healthy meats can add plenty of brain-boosters, like protein, iron, fatty-acids, iodine, and choline, into your child’s diet whenever he or she is ready!
Incorporating delicious brain-boosting foods to your child’s diet at an early age is an excellent way to promote healthy eating habits and a lifetime of brain health. As your baby turns into a toddler, begin talking about how food can impact the way we feel. Explain why some foods give us more energy to play and learn while others can give you an upset tummy or make us feel tired.
These important conversations provide children with knowledge to make their own smart food choices and continue supporting brain health into adolescence, and eventually adulthood.
If you like this, check out these related articles:
-How Does Sugar Affect Your Child's Health?
-The Stages of Solids: Is Your Baby Ready?