6 Nutrients + Minerals to build stronger bones for Kids
It is very easy for a mother to recognise how fast her child is growing… with or without the hints provided by clothes getting shorter or smaller! It is all an effect of the skeletal growth that occurs along with the bone and muscle development during these years. Your child’s bones grow and develop till adulthood, but the childhood years are the foundation for stronger bones. This is the time when bones get calcified and stronger along with the increase in muscle mass that demands a constant supply of necessary nutrients like protein, calcium, phosphorous etc in the form of a healthy diet.
Which nutrients and minerals work to make your child’s bones stronger?
Nutrients like protein and calcium along with minerals like phosphorus, magnesium and Vitamins C and D work hand in hand to make your child’s bones stronger. So, let us explore more about these nutrients…
Protein is vital for your child’s bone health as:
• It is required for the formation of new bone cells and their growth.
• Any damage to the bone cell or tissue is repaired and maintained by protein.
• They help make haemoglobin, that carry oxygen and other nutrients throughout our body.
• They provide energy when carbohydrates and fat are deficient.
Protein is found in foods like milk and milk products like curds, paneer, cheese etc, non-vegetarian foods, eggs, cereals, pulses, dals and nuts. To benefit the most it is advisable to give a combination of foods to growing kids. Hence combine milk with a cereal to make porridge, or combine rice with dal to make khichdi.
It is a mineral that aids building and strengthening of bones and teeth. During childhood there is a rapid formation of new bone cells and teeth enamel. When new cells are formed, calcium starts depositing on them thereby making them firmer and stronger. Hence, give required amount of calcium to your child by including milk and milk products (like curds, cheese and paneer), leafy vegetables (like Spinach, Fenugreek, and Cauliflower), Broccoli, Sesame Seeds, nachni, Asparagus, pulses (like Soyabean, Moong, Matki, sprouts etc.)
3. VITAMIN C:
• Aids calcium absorption from foods
• Maintains healthy bones, teeth and blood vessels
• Promotes healing of wounds and broken bones.
Include plenty of fresh fruits like Orange, Sweet Lime, Pineapple, Guava, Amla and vegetables like Capsicum, cabbage, broccoli and sprouts to get the required share of vitamin C.
• Phosphorous works with calcium to build strong bones and teeth by making it available to bone cells.
• Helps in bone metabolism process.
• Magnesium helps in growth and development of bones.
Eating a well balanced diet comprising all the five food groups is just enough to provide your child the necessary nutrients like phosphorous and magnesium.
6. Vitamin D:
• Enhances calcium absorption.
• Aids in strengthening of bones and teeth.
• Keep muscles supple.
Vitamin D is found in most non-vegetarian foods; however our body can make its own when exposed to sunlight. Hence, expose your child to sunlight early in the morning to get a good share of vitamin D.
Along with a balanced diet, your child’s daily routine should also include plenty of playtime. “All work and no play” is more a reality now than ever before Even the healthiest of foods can be stored as fat if your child’s day is all work and no play, turning him or her into a couch potato. Physical exercise helps children to be active throughout the day, improve coordination, grow tall, and eat better as well.
Given below are recipes with nutrients and minerals to build stronger bones for your kids. We hope you enjoyed this article and would love to hear from you.