A balanced diet is important to maintain good health, and during childhood, this is no less important. During the school stage, from 6 to 12 years, correct nutrition becomes even more important, since children face not only an energy expenditure due to their physical activity, but also to the mental
A balanced diet is important to maintain good health, and during childhood, this is no less important. During the school stage, from 6 to 12 years, correct nutrition becomes even more important, since children face not only an energy expenditure due to their physical activity, but also to the mental activity that the school day supposes .
In Guiainfantil.com we tell you what you should keep in mind when thinking about the menus you prepare for your children.
How the school-age child's diet should be
A balanced diet should include foods from the most important groups, sufficiently varied to supply all the essential nutrients. As much as possible, foods should be as processed or refined as possible, avoiding salt, added sugars and saturated and modified fats.
- The protein should be consumed, in small portions, but at each meal. It can be of animal or vegetable origin. Animal protein is usually of high biological value, containing a large part of the essential amino acids for the body. In the case of vegetable protein, its biological value is smaller. Legumes, for example, are a source of protein that, when combined with cereals, reaches a biological value similar to that of animal protein. La - Fat
, despite its bad reputation, is necessary for growth and of course, because it provides energy, so low-fat products are not the most appropriate during childhood. The origin of the fat, however, is of great importance. Fish, for example, contain polyunsaturated fats, with omega 3 and 6 fatty acids that although not all are essential for the body, are some of the healthiest fats. Likewise, olive oil and nuts also contain healthy, monounsaturated fats in most cases. Saturated fats, for example, in the most fatty parts of the pieces of meat, or trans or modified fats, present in many bakery products, are the main fats to be avoided.- Carbohydrates
can be simple or complex. Simple carbohydrates, coming not only from sugar but also from refined grains, should not exceed 10% of the total caloric intake. The complexes, from whole grains, legumes or potatoes, should be the basis of the children's diet. In fact, low-carbohydrate diets are not appropriate at these ages. - Fiber
, on the other hand, can be obtained from fruits and vegetables, as well as from whole grains.- To drink
, water, up to 2 liters a day, depending on age. Avoid juices and soft drinks, not only at meals but also between meals.At least 5 daily servings of fruits and vegetables, preferably raw, should be consumed because, in addition to fiber, they provide vitamins and minerals and phytonutrients. Fruits are also a source of simple sugars, so they are especially useful for providing energy immediately.
It is important, in addition to energy intake, to maintain a pattern of 5 or 6 meals a day, so that the glucose intake, the brain food, is kept as constant as possible.