Children and Adolescent development and nutrition
As many of you may know the growth and development of children and adolescents is heavily reliant on good nutrition obtained from their diets.
The growth spurts for girls starts between the ages 8-12 and for boys starts between 10-14. Therefore, the period before and during these ages are crucial for ensuring our children are getting good quality food, good nutrition, to fulfil their potential.
One of the many nutrients required for optimum nutrition is protein. Protein, comprised of amino acids are the building blocks for growth and repair and is key in the pathway for reaching optimal energy. Other nutrients required include iron, B-vitamins, vitamin C, selenium, vitamin A and magnesium.
But how do we get our children to eat all these vital nutrients without making complicated recipes? Easy… meat from your local butchers contains all the listed nutrients required for optimum health.
It’s that simple! Your local craft butcher, provides quality and locally sourced meat so you feel comforted in the fact your feeding your family with nutritious food. Lean red meat, is an excellent source of protein and iron.
Iron from meat is the most readily absorbable form of iron from food sources. When iron is consumed in combination with vitamin C it is absorbed even faster. So, another reason of adding rich greens and colourful vegetables alongside your lean steak or burger.
One of the major benefits of buying your beef from your local butchers you know its grass-fed. You may say so what? Well studies have done comparisons between grass fed beef and grain fed beef and the nutritional differences are worth mentioning.
Grass fed beef are higher in omega-3 fatty acids and conjugated linoleic acid (CLAs) Omega 3s provide a role in optimum cognitive development (essential for those that are studying hard) and are good for heart health.
If you haven’t heard of CLAs, they are powerful polyunsaturated fatty acids that can only be obtained from the diet and have many health benefits including helping to build muscle and discourage weight gain. They also contained more anti-oxidants such as Vitamin A and E.
Meat is extremely versatile, especially for children and teenagers. Ask your own butcher to trim of any
excess fat when buying red meat such as beef and lamb. This ensures you are getting the vital nutrients and avoiding the saturated fats.
Other lean meats such as chicken, and trimmed pork do not contain as much iron but contain good sources of protein to keep their energy up for their activities and of course concentrating in school. Lean meat can be used to make healthy homemade dishes such as casseroles, stir-fries, curries, stews, roasts and salads.
It is recommended young children and teenagers eat 1-2 servings of protein each day. Meat as a good source of protein can be consumed 3 -4 days per weeks. Other sources of protein include eggs, nuts seeds, legumes and fish. Try to eat at least 2 portions of oily fish per week also.
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Chat soon, MJ