Diet and a Child's Behavior - Does Sugar Really Make Kids Hyper?
How Various Foods Can Impact Your Child's Mood
By: totanaliz on: Tue 01 of May, 2007 [18:01 UTC] (2682 reads)
If you think of your child's body as an engine, then the “fuel” that we put in affects their performance. Our aim is to put in food that helps them to perform more effectively. Find out how diet affect your child's mood and behavior, and learn about healthy food alternatives.
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The food that we give to our kids has a direct impact on their behavior and their ability to do well and concentrate at school. Poor diet has been considered by some experts to be a factor in juvenile crime.
Changing your kids' diet ( and indeed the whole families' diet ) can have the following benefits:
- better academic performance
- calmer behaviour
- better concentration
- less agressive and argumentative
Find a healthy way to start the day
I'm sure that you have heard this piece of advice many times, but start the day with a good breakfast, consisting of complex carbohydrates and protein.
These foods will give your child a slow release of energy throughout the morning. Examples would be porridge oats, baked beans on wholewheat toast, wholewheat pancakes with fruit, muesli and high fiber cereals, eggs in any form or lean back bacon.
Avoid high sugar “quick fix” foods
High sugar, over processed foods give our body a quick rush or energy, a sugar "high," but it doesn't last. The resultant rises and falls in blood sugar levels leave our bodies confused, and children become hyperactive, jumpy or just plain naughty as their body struggles to cope with these surges.
By mid morning at school they will be tired, flagging and struggling to concentrate. So high sugar cereals, sweet pastries, chocolate loaded croissants, etc. should be off the menu!
Cut down on additives
Try to steer clear of too many over processed foods. Additives, chemicals and dyes can have an adverse effect on many children, resulting in food intolerance and allergies.
Tatrazine (E102) is found in many yellow dyed foods, and has become famously linked with hyperactivity in kids. The best thing to do is to feed your kids as much “home cooked” food as you can. That way you have control over the exact ingredients, and can have an input into what they put into their body.
It doesn't have to be time consuming or difficult. Check out our recipes section for some healthy “fast food” alternatives that your kids will love.
Remember to include the healthy, slow release energy foods in the lunch box too, as that way your kids will maintain energy and concentration levels throughout the day.