Encourage the development of your kid's brain – Few must-have brain-friendly foods
Parents are extremely worried about the trend that they see is coming for their children and that which is...
Parents are extremely worried about the trend that they see is coming for their children and that which is totally getting out of hand – the electronic overload. As more and more kids get engaged in iPods, video games, smartphones, laptops and endless texting between friends, they are eventually moving farther from activities which are actually meant to stimulate their bodies and brains. As we know that this is the digital age, there's nothing wrong in letting your kids indulge in electronic devices but you can't forget that electronic moderation is the key and parents have to encourage their kids to arouse their bodies and brains on a regular basis.
As long as the development of a kid's brain is concerned, there are mainly 4 areas of development, language & communication, motor (physical), cognitive and social & emotional. The development of the human brain is a part of cognitive development and it includes the way in which a child's intellect grows- his learning, thinking and problem-solving skills. These are the key skills which have a strong impact on the other developmental areas.
Make your child's brain agile and sharp without any fancy gimmicks
Here are few tips that will help your child's brain to sharpen without the use of any costly gadgets or fancy gimmicks. Try to utilize them on a daily basis to witness an improvement.
Read anything you get in front of you
Probably one of the biggest gifts that you can give to a brain that is hungry is knowledge. There is still no other way of learning new things apart from reading. Though their school books are definitely interesting, you should also give them other materials like nutrition labels, cookbooks, newspapers, movie schedules, travel itineraries, menus and several other things to expand their knowledge. Take a test of their knowledge by asking them to summarize what they understood.
Give him short math activities in the store or in the kitchen
Most families spend a long time with each other inside the kitchen and any mom can leverage this opportunity to allow the minds of their kids to think in a mathematical way. Provide them with small jobs inside the kitchen so that they need to do a little bit of math in their heads. For example you may take a look at the nutrition label along with your child and then decide the number of servings and the serving size of each package. Ask your kid to calculate the total number of crackers or cookies he would get per each serving.
Give them activities to keep them active
Those kids who constantly engage themselves in playing games, or swinging on the swings, doing something in the jungle gym, riding their bikes are always engaging their bodies along with their imagination. On the contrary, kids who are watching television and watching TV are not engaging their imagination or body. Hence, parents should always involve them in physical activities which also stimulate them mentally. Plan new things to keep your kids moving.
Make them acquire a new hobby
Watch out for a hobby which is appropriate for your child's age and which he has never tried before. This could be painting or building a model airplane or taking to pottery classes as this is one of the newest trend which is soaring in popularity these days. You can teach them to knit, sew and crochet as this will sharpen their brain.
Try to involve him in memory games
We can't deny that there's nothing better than good memory as it keeps them focused on one thing. You can put 10 items inside a box and let them see the box for 45 seconds before you put it away. Ask them to recall the items that they saw inside the box. This game is effortless and easy yet too effective. If you can involve more than one kid, the competition gets tougher and the game gets interesting. Other games can also be tried out for improving concentration of your kid.
Make him solve puzzles and construction blocks
Word searches, crossword puzzles and the famous game of Sudoku are few of the best ways in which you can exercise your brain. Even though you may not be able to allow them hours in doing them but 15 minutes every day is just perfect. One more way in which you can make their brains sharper is by letting them go creative with the construction games like wooden blocks, Legos, constructing sand castles, building houses of cards or playing with huge foam blocks. Building blocks tend to be perfect for every age-group and most pediatricians think so.
6 Must-have brain-friendly foods – Give them the right nutrition
There's no doubt about the fact that your brain is certainly a big deal and it is the control center of your entire body, it keeps charge your beating heart, your breathing process and lets you feel, move and think. Here are the foods which play a role in maintaining proper health of your brain. Take a look at the list.
#1: Fatty Fish
Whenever there is a discussion on brain foods, fatty fish is certainly at the top of the list. Such fishes include trout, salmon and sardines which have an abundance of omega-3 fatty acids. If you don't have access to such fishes, you may also try having fish oil supplements which are available at stores. Almost 60% of your brain is made up of fat and half of this fat inside your brain is omega-3 kind. Omega-3 is used by your brain to build nerve and brain cells and hence these fats are vital for memory and learning. If you don't get enough omega-3s, this can lead to learning impairment and also depression.
There are several health benefits of blueberries and some of them are specifically vital for the brain. Blueberries provide your body with anthocyanins which are compounds from plants with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Antioxidants act against inflammation and stress which are the two main conditions which lead to aging of the brain and other neurodegenerative diseases. The antioxidants that are found in blueberries usually accumulate and gather in the brain and they also help in proper communication between the brain cells.
In case you can't start your day without having a cup of coffee, there's good news for you. Did you know that the two main components of coffee – antioxidants and caffeine help your brain to function properly? The caffeine that you find in coffee has several positive impacts on the brain which include increasing brain's alertness, improving your mood and sharpening your focus and concentration. If you can drink coffee over a long period of time, this can also reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.
Broccoli is something that is packed with powerful and effective compounds from plants, including antioxidants. Broccoli is also high in Vitamin K and it delivers the entire amount of your daily intake which is recommended by doctors. This is a fat-soluble vitamin which is vital for forming sphingolipids – a kind of fat which is packed inside the brain cells. Apart from Vitamin K, broccoli also comprises of several compounds which give it the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. It protects your brain against any form of damage.
There is a lot of buzz around regarding turmeric and this is a dark yellow spice which is one of the main ingredients in cooking. But apart from this, it also has several benefits for the brain. The most active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin and it can cross the blood-brain barrier which means that it can enter the brain directly and help the brain cells. It is one of the main anti-inflammatory compounds or antioxidants which have been linked with benefiting memory, easing depression and allowing new cells of the brain to grow.
#6: Pumpkin seeds
The seeds of pumpkin contain extremely powerful antioxidants which safeguard your brain and body from facing any radical damage. Not only that, pumpkin seeds are also a vital source of iron, magnesium, copper and zinc. Each of the aforementioned nutrients is vital for the health of the brain. Zinc is extremely vital for signalling nerves, magnesium is vital for memory and learning, copper is useful for controlling the signals of the nerve and iron deficiency is often linked with impaired functioning of the brain and brain fog.
There are several foods which can maintain the health of your brain. Some foods like vegetables and fruits and coffee and tea are rich in antioxidants which guard your brain from damage. Other foods like eggs and nuts also comprise of nutrients which help in development of the brain and supporting your memory. So, if you wish to boost the alertness of your brain, your mood and memory, make sure you include all or at least few of the above listed foods in your diet. Regardless of whether you're worried for your kids or for young adults, including the right foods in your diet is imperative.