The child’s nutrition significantly affects not only the state of organs and systems, the nature of metabolic reactions of the body, but also the state of mental processes: memory, attention, determines the level of performance and performance.
Malnutrition leads to many diseases. The risk of endocrine diseases, disorders of the digestive system, metabolic disorders, there is a clear tendency to obesity, circulatory system pathology, cancer.
It has been found that nutrition is one of the factors that significantly affects not only the state of organs and systems, the nature of metabolic reactions of the body, but also the state of mental processes: memory, attention, determines the level of human performance and performance.
To reduce the risk of non-communicable diseases and keep the body healthy, improve cognitive function, adolescents need to be encouraged to eat healthily.
Proper hydration can also improve cognitive function in children and adolescents, which is important for learning.
Regular or irregular, balanced or unbalanced diet – all these and other factors have their roots in family settings, especially in childhood. How the nutrition system is organized in the family circle can influence the further nutrition of the child in old age.
The study showes that the majority of respondents eat daily with their families (70.9%). However, respondents also reported frequent consumption of food in front of TVs or gadgets that did not promote digestion. Almost a third (27.9%) consume food every day or 5-6 days a week while watching TV.
The formation of food preferences and eating behavior in adolescence is evidenced by the answers of students who regularly eat both healthy foods (vegetables or fruits) and potentially harmful (sweets, carbonated beverages).
Increasingly, the diet includes foods containing trans fats. If they are eaten regularly, the structure of cell membranes changes, which causes metabolic disorders, diseases of the nervous system, cardiovascular system, liver, high cholesterol, obesity and more.
Trans fats are part of the following products: crackers, cookies, cakes, donuts, french fries, almost all semi-finished products, packaged and ready-to-eat products (chips, crackers, nuts, popcorn, sauces, mayonnaise, most chocolates and ice cream, candy, waffle).
More than once a week, teenagers eat a variety of sweets. This was stated by 75.2% of respondents, a third of them (35.5%) – eat sweets every day in different amounts, especially for girls of all ages. Excessive sugar consumption can cause a number of health problems.
Enrich your diet with a variety of fruits and vegetables. Eat cabbage, cucumbers, lettuce and other greens, onions, pumpkin, carrots, peppers, tomatoes, radishes and more.
Prefer whole grains, add unpolished rice, oatmeal, buckwheat porridge and other cereals to the menu.
Choose low-fat dairy products. Try to eat dairy products 2-3 times a day.
Diversify your diet with protein foods. Healthy eating involves eating meat (poultry, veal, etc.). You should also cook fish 2-3 times a week.
Add beans and nuts to the menu. These are sources of nutrients and vitamins.
Vegetables, for example, do not contain a large number of calories (except for starch – potatoes, etc.), have a high content of dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals and bioflavonoids. That is why it is recommended to eat 4-5 servings of vegetables a day, as well as 2 servings of fruits a day.
Healthy eating also involves reducing the amount of salt and sugar in the diet.
The recommended salt content for children is no more than 2 g per day, and for adolescents – less than 5 g. For sugar, the daily norm for adolescents is no more than 25 g per day, including added sugar (the manufacturer uses it to improve the taste or extend the shelf life of food).
Remember that a healthy breakfast can improve a child’s cognitive function and mood. Motivate children to eat great!