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News - Look after our children - they are the future

By Orley Moyal MTech (Hom) SA

“It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men”  F Douglass

While parenthood may be one of the most rewarding roles in life, it comes with the toughest responsibility of ensuring that proper nourishment in a child’s early years of development and growth will lay down the essential foundations for later life. 

There are many factors affecting your child’s health, such as genetics, the mother’s diet and health status before and during pregnancy and childhood environmental and physical factors, all of which will determine the different sensitivities children will have to foods and their environment, as well as their individual nutritional requirements. 

As if this wasn’t complex enough, parents also have to contend with the constant barrage of junk food promotions, corrupting dietary choices. Meanwhile, an increasing body of research, such as that on vitamin D, is telling us that despite having more food choices than ever before, our children may still be nutrient deficient. Indeed, it would appear that cases of rickets in children are increasing, which is as a direct result of vitamin D deficiency. 

With this in mind, it’s reassuring to know that by simply supporting our children with essential, good-quality nutritional supplements, to underpin a wholefood diet containing good quantities of fruit and vegetables, we are able to encourage and maintain the best possible growth and development.    

From the start, it is important to note that in these early years, the digestive system is still quite immature and thatabout 70% of the body's immune system is found in the digestive tract. This makes it vital that we support this system first, thereby not only improving the absorption of nutrients from the diet, but also reducing sensitivities to foods, while maximising immune function. Since bacteria (probiotics) form the primary ‘work-force’ and ‘defenders’ of the gut, supplementing with a good probiotic formula is paramount. 

Since the brain comprises of water and fat (75% water and approximately 15 billion nerve cells constituting the fatty tissue) and peak brain growth occurs in childhood, it is easy to understand why providing proper hydration and plenty of essential fatty acids (omega 3s) supports and enhances optimal brain development. Since omega oils containing all important DHA and EPA can be difficult to absorb, it’s always best to provide them in an emulsified, more absorbable form. This makes it easier to mix with a juice or stir into foods. 

Since a child’s body is in a constant state of growth, it requires more nutrients on the whole and ensuring that enough are provided through the diet can be quite tricky. So, supporting the foundations with a good multivitamin and mineral can ensure that the most important bases are covered, without making every mealtime a battleground. It’s also important to ensure that a multivitamin is formulated by experts, therefore combining exactly the right balance of nutrients, without any artificial ingredients. Always ensure that key developmental nutrients, such as vitamin D, calcium, magnesium and iron,are provided in the maximum amounts and the most absorbable forms.


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