These 5 Super Healthy Foods will help improve learning and focus in kids of all ages; don’t pack a lunch without them!
It’s that time of year when kids look forward to returning to school (well, most of them) and seeing their friends (for sure). Parent’s, on the other hand, can look forward to the return of their kid’s daily routine (whew!) and getting their family’s nutrition program back on track.
When sending kids back to school, setting them up for success is top of mind. Fortunately, encouraging optimal concentration and focus in the classroom – key components of learning – doesn’t need to be difficult. It simply starts with some quality sleep, a little exercise and – my favourite topic – some good nutrition!
In this week’s blog post, we look at 5 Super Healthy Foods to Improve Learning and Focus for kids of all ages. Be sure to read the full blog post online!
Let’s look at 5 super healthy foods for learning and focus:
Free Run Eggs with Omega-3
A healthy breakfast sets a solid foundation for a great day at school. Complete protein is important for balancing blood sugar, helping to maintain balanced energy and concentration levels throughout the day. Protein – found in abundance in eggs – is also necessary for the brain’s neurotransmitters supporting alertness, attention, motivation, memory and problem solving.
We love the versatility of eggs! Serve them baked, scrambled, hard or soft boiled, poached or turn them into portable slices of delicious French toast with a touch of cinnamon for those late mornings.
Embrace these vibrant orange nutritional powerhouses. The sweet potato is a talented tuber providing all essential amino acids, making it a contributing source of plant protein. They offer generous amount of beta carotene and vitamin C, as well as key B vitamins that encourage energy production in brain cells and neurotransmitter production/function for important overall brain health.
Steam and add to a Budda bowl or puree into a silky soup, shred raw into a salad, or serve as a side of fries. Don’t underestimate the kid friendly satisfaction of the sweet potato!
These wee drops of blue goodness are not only sweet and juicy but are highly nutritious. They’re packed with valuable vitamins, minerals and powerful antioxidants. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals, which help protect the brain, supporting motor skill development and learning capacity.
Blueberries make a tasty snack just by themselves and are easy to pack in lunch box; they also make a flavourful and colourful addition to truly any meal of the day.
In the standard Western diet we tend to get too much Omega 6 and not enough Omega 3. Yet, bringing these fats back into balance can be challenging enough for an adult, let alone a school age girl or boy.
That’s one of the reasons why Hemp Hearts make such a good addition to the diet. They offer a great natural balance of Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids – a 3:1 ratio. Omega 3 fatty acids play a very important role in the development of healthy brains! In fact, low levels of Omega 3 are linked to poor reading, poor memory and even behavioral issues.
Beyond their rich Omega 3 content, Hemp Hearts are also loaded with easily digestible plant protein and fibre.
We recommend sprinkling them in yogurt, on breakfast cereals like oatmeal, and in trail mixes. We love Manitoba Harvest hemp products; you can find a variety of them in-store!
Fermented/Probiotic Foods – don’t pick just one, eat them all!
Our gut is full of good and bad bacteria. Maintaining the delicate balance of this bacteria is crucial. Why? Healthy gut bacteria helps maintain the protective lining of our digestive tract, a strengthened immune system, and may have a significant effect on our behaviour (our gut is often referred to as our ‘second brain’).
Fermented foods contain plenty of the ‘good’ bacteria. Introducing a mix of them into your family’s meal plan gives the taste buds a treat, while providing a symbiotic variety of go getters ready to help nourish top digestive performance!
Here’s a few to start with:
- probiotic yogurt
Get back to school in good health!
Back to school can be a time of both joy and stress for kids and parents alike and the transition may not always be smooth. The numerous things to think about, prepare for and organize can frazzle all involved (parents mostly). Check a box off by keeping these super healthy foods stocked in your kitchen and help give kids the clarity, focus and concentration they require for ideal learning in the classroom!
Do you have a favourite healthy food or snack you rely on to keep your kids nourished and satisfied? Be sure to let us know in the comments down below!