Children, especially infants and toddlers, not only need snacks to maintain a healthy diet but also to ensure healthy brain development.
This has come to my attention with the addition of a 2-year-old great granddaughter to our family. Watching how little she can consume at a time and how easily she gets distracted from eating, I learned it’s almost impossible to be sure she is getting all the nutrients required for healthy growth. Not only for physical growth, but for mental acuity. Especially omega-3 fatty acids and choline.
I learned this from the makers of Brainiac Foods, who created snacks that incorporate BrainPack, a proprietary blend of brain nutrients with the omega-3 fatty acids and choline. I also talked to Karen Beers, a dietitian with UCHeath.
“Omega-3 fatty acids and choline are essential nutrients that can be found in a variety of foods,” Beers said. “Families that eat a varied diet that includes fish, eggs, nuts and nut butters, and vegetables such as Brussels sprouts and broccoli, are probably getting enough.”
She agreed that if parents feel the challenge of getting the right foods consumed by children , then supplements or foods that have these nutrients added could be beneficial.
“Some children are less likely to eat these foods, and they especially would benefit from them,” she said. “These nutrients are especially important in infancy (and are present in breast milk and many formulas), but they continue to be important throughout life.”
A quick snack for toddlers can be simply a few veggies, like baby carrots, celery, cucumbers, radishes and broccoli with hummus for dipping. Be sure the hummus is made with a high chickpea content.
Even if you have a child that gobbles up salmon and broccoli, they probably aren’t eating it every day. Offering a 4-ounce serving of a fortified Brainiac snack supplies as much omega-3 as a kid’s serving of salmon and as much as 2 cups of choline-rich broccoli.
The Brainiac Foods include an applesauce, nut butters, tubes of yogurt and powders to make smoothies. They are gluten free, GMO free, kosher and have no added sugars or artificial flavors. They are approved by pediatricians. The products can be found at Walmart Supercenter, 1575 Space Center Drive, or order online at brainiacfoods.com.
Contact the writer: 636-0271.