Food

The Best Sources of Protein for a Solid Foundation for Kids

Ever since we were children, we have been hearing about how protein is one of the most important micronutrients in our diet. This is because protein is the fuel for our body to perform multiple functions. It helps muscles and tissues to grow and repair.

In fact, when children are growing, the right amount of protein in dietcan also be great for their cognitive health in addition to their physical health.

How exactly does protein-rich food make a whole world of difference? Why is it so important for growth and development? What are some high protein foods that you must incorporate into your child’s diet? Let’s understand.

What is the role of protein in Kids’ Development?

Protein is in every cell of our body, which is why it is critical in building tissues and supporting the rapid growth in children. It builds our bones, muscles, and skin, and also serves as the key component of antibodies required to fight off diseases and illnesses.

Though we all need protein in our diet to stay healthy, protein for kids is more important in order to keep their immune systems strong.

What happens when kids do not get enough protein in their diet?

When kids miss out on proteins or do not get the recommended amount, they may experience a lack of energy, poor concentration, pain in joints and bones, delayed growth, and a deteriorating immunity. This may be a problem in children who are picky eaters or often display a lack of appetite.

However, you can pick out some healthy sources of protein and use them in interesting recipes to increase your children’s daily intake of this crucial micronutrient.

7 Best Sources of Protein

Here are some high protein foods that you should include in your child’s diet:

  1. Dairy Foods – Dairy foods like cheese, milk, and yogurt are some super healthy sources of protein for children. They provide all essential amino acids to the body for its growth. However, compared to milk, cheese has high protein content and also consists of vitamin D and calcium. So, if your child is fussy with milk or yogurt, you can prepare recipes with lots of different kinds of cheese. You can also give your child cheese as a snack.
  2. Eggs Eggs are an excellent source of fat, iron, choline, and vitamins D, A, E, and B12. They are the perfect breakfast for toddlers. Moreover, they are easy to prepare so you can give your child eggs as the first meal of the day.
  3. Nuts and Seeds Nuts and seeds are rich in protein, fibers, minerals, and vitamins. They help burn energy and also regulate the food intake in children. You can give your child a handful of seeds and nuts as snacks between big meals to meet their protein needs. You can also give them a spoonful of peanut butter or make a quick PB & J.
  4. Lean Meat – Lean meat has fewer fats and calories, plus it is an excellent protein rich food. It is the muscle tissue in animals like beef, chicken, fish, and turkey, which provide collagen, vitamins, and proteins needed for growth as well as repair. It is essential in building muscle mass, which is critical for a strong and healthy body.
  5. Lentils and Rice – Lentils have protein, minerals, and fiber. And rice has some protein and carbohydrates with virtually no sugar. So, a meal of lentils and rice together can help your kids with their daily dose of protein. Lentils and rice are also excellent if your child is vegan.
  6. Beans and Legumes – Beans and legumes are one of the oldest cultivated plants. They consist of the most essential nutrients like protein, B vitamins, iron, calcium, potassium, zinc, etc. Most importantly, beans and legumes are rich in fiber, which makes them an important part of regular meals. Your child can have a balanced, nutrition-rich diet with beans; all you need is half a cup of grains and boiled beans and your toddler would be good to go.
  7. Whole-wheat Bread – Whole-wheat bread has several nutrients like protein and fiber. And because of its high fiber and protein content, brown bread is preferred over white bread. Moreover, whole-wheat bread consists of vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta-carotene. So, make sure to include this nutritious food item in your child’s diet to fulfill their protein requirements.

Conclusion

Children’s diets should contain both plant-based as well as animal-based food. So, to regulate the intake of protein, give your child a mix and match of protein rich food items in almost all their meals for the continuous growth of the body and mind. Also, if your child is a fussy eater, display to them the importance of healthy food by eating it together.


Author Bio: Kunal Tambe is part of the content marketing team at Two Brothers Organic Farms. With his team, he works tirelessly to create awareness about organic farming, food sovereignty, sustainable practices, nutrition, climate change and a myriad of issues that surround these topics. His content offers value to farmers, the agriculture industry and to end consumers. Besides writing and developing content strategies, he loves adventure sports and listening to classical music.


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