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What is the role of nutrition in child development?

Updated on 22 January 2021
study24x7
CBSE CLASS 8
20 min read 5 views
Updated on 22 January 2021

Good Nutrition is the food that you intake in order to stay healthy and fit. The food that you intake helps in the growth and fight numerous diseases in the body. So, it is important to eat a healthy diet. Along with the physical exercises and outdoor activities, kids must also eat healthy home-made food as that will help them in staying healthy thereby, improving growth and stamina.


There is a huge role of nutrition in child development. If a child is provided with a healthy diet right from childhood, then he/ she will be less prone to diseases. In this way, the child’s growth will not be hindered. Parents must pay special attention to the nutrition and diet that their child intakes. There must be a balance between street food and home-made food.


What nutrition is required for different age groups?


This question is often asked by the people. Dairy products like milk, eggs, chicken, fish etc must be included in a child’s diet. Parents must include the following nutrients in their child’s diet.


LIFE STAGE

REQUIRED NUTRITIONAL DIET

Infancy

Energy, Protein and Fatty Acids

Adolescence

Energy, Protein, Calcium, Phosphorous, Magnesium, Zinc

Early Adulthood ( aged 19 – 50)

Vitamin C, K, B1, B2, B3, Chorine, Magnesium, Zinc, Chromium

Middle Age ( aged 51 – 70)

Vitamin B6, Vitamin D

Old Age ( aged 70+)

Vitamin D

 

These are some of the nutrients that must be included in everyone’s diet. Fruits like apple, bananas, strawberry cover up the calcium requirements and fruits like Kiwi and others include antioxidants which help in fighting diseases. You must also include green leafy vegetables which can result in proper growth. 



These are some of the nutritional requirements by age. According to some reports, it is advisable that you must have the majority of intake of vegetables. Green leafy vegetables like broccoli, cucumber etc must be included in your diet. Along with such nutrients, dry fruits provide the necessary oil to the body. Therefore, dry fruits must be included along with others as these dry fruits give the necessary nourishment to the body. 


Government guidelines for children’s nutritional requirement


The government of India has included various points about nutrition that must be included in everyone’s diet. This will help the children in being healthier and less prone to diseases like the common cold, Flu and many others. Below are some of the pointers included in the government’s policy about nutrition.


1. Plenty of milk must be given to the children that will make their bones strong.


2. Outdoor activities must be undertaken by the kids so that it boosts the stamina thereby resulting in a healthy living.


3. Overeating must be avoided i.e. kids must eat at frequent intervals and must not overeat at a time.    


4. Kids must be exposed to sunlight so that they get Vitamin D which is important for a child’s growth.


5. Energy rich food like cereals, oats, muesli, milk, mashed potatoes etc must be included in a kid’s diet so that the need for carbohydrates is covered up in the body.


6. Children must drink 2 – 2.5 litres of water per day whether it is summers or winters. This will provide proper nourishment to the body as the human body comprises of 70% water. Therefore, it is important to drink water.   


These are some of the government guidelines that all of us must intake in order to maintain a healthy living. 


Benefits of Healthy Eating in Early Childhood


There are a lot of benefits of healthy eating. If a child is given a proper diet, then he/she will be healthier than the other kids. Dairy products, green vegetables and fruits must be primarily included in a child’s diet. Rest other things are secondary. Below are some points depicting the benefits of healthy eating.   


  1. A healthy diet results in the good mental growth of an individual. 


  1. Vitamin D is very important for children. That is why, it is important for the students to play outdoors thereby, absorbing some sunlight which will cover up the calcium deficiency in children.


  1. Children inculcate healthy eating habits if they are taught to eat healthy food from childhood. This will result in good physical growth. 


  1. Children must be given sweets to eat as sweets include carbohydrates which will provide them the necessary fats and proteins. 


These are some of the benefits that kids love and enjoy. The nutritional requirements for children are given above. Kids must have a healthy diet that will help them in the long run. Nutrition has an influence on cognitive development. Once the child takes in proper nutrients, it can result in a good academic life. A student can focus attentively on his / her studies and will be able to achieve a good percentage. 


Undernourished kids have low energy and are not able to concentrate on their studies. Parents must take care of their children thereby including proper nutrients that will help the kids grow in a healthy way. Therefore, not only kids but everyone must include proper nutrients in their diet to protect them from diseases and have a healthy living.  


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