As you know, crunchy and colorful fruits are very important and enjoyable in your kid’s diet. Most babies eat fruits and vegetables in their first year. However, after becoming more independent eaters, many kids become fussier with regards to some foods including fruits. While forcing children to eat more fruits never works, it does help to set a good example by eating fruits yourself, so make sure to include as many fruits as possible in your family’s diet and enjoy them together!
There are a lot of reasons for everyone, and especially children to eat fruits because they are abundant in essential nutrients and vitamins which contribute to their health, growth as well as development. Besides, fruits also include other important plant substances that can help reduce the risk of some diseases such as cancers and heart disease.
Let’s look at the top 10 fruits your kids should definitely be exposed to on a regular basis:
They include strawberries, blueberries, cherries, and blackberries. The darker the colour pigment of the berry the more nutritious it is. Berries contain high levels of antioxidants, especially vitamin C which can help prevent the risk of cancer. Berries are also good foods for brain. In a recent research, these fruits have been shown to support the cognitive functioning of rats, and researchers also speculate a similar result in humans. They also hope that these fruits may be important in preventing the unwanted long-term effects of stress on human brain function. In addition, some studies have shown that berry extracts can help to improve memory function. Berries’ seeds are also a rich source of omega-3 fats. If you want to boost your kids’ brainpower, buy more berries for snacking, or help your kids make their smoothies that they desire. You do not need to trick them as kids love these fruits. Also, you can add some berries to your kids’ yogurt, dips, and hot or cold cereal. For a light dessert, add a mound of berries to a whipped topping. Otherwise, you also can add berries to vegetables that can boost the flavor. For example, you can try sliced cherries with broccoli or strawberries with green beans.
Apples are delicious, but that is not the main reason why kids should be eating more apples. Apple is really one of the best fruits for human health. Are you familiar with the saying “An apple a day, keeps the doctor away”? The nutrients apples provide actually help your kids stay strong and healthy while doing the things they love such as climbing, jumping, playing sports, etc.
There are a lot of goodies this fruit contains to help your kids grow well. Firstly, pectin which is a dietary fiber has some amazing properties. It can dissolve in water and also stimulate good bacteria to live in your kids’ gut and simultaneously, fight against any bad bacteria which try to live there. Secondly, a mineral called boron will help your kids’ bone and teeth stay strong and healthy. As your children are in the most important years in a child’s development, this mineral is very essential to them. Besides, apples are also rich in vitamin C. Just one apple can supply a quarter of your kids’ vitamin C requirements. Finally, apples help to protect you and your kids from diseases such as heart attacks, cancers, vision disorders, diabetes, and so on. It is fairly easy to include apples in your daily diet – you can add some apples as a light dessert after meals. Otherwise, you also can have a cup of apple juice alone or in combination with other fruits going well with it such as carrots or oranges.
Did you know that athletes eat lots of bananas because they are rich in carbohydrates that can help power muscles. Surely kids don’t need bananas to increase their muscle tone, however, kids do need the carbohydrates as a source of energy. This fruit is rich in vitamin B6 which is needed for a healthy skin, a nervous system and to produce the needed energy in the body. In addition to this, banana is also a rich source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, and potassium which will help to keep your kids’ hearts strong and healthy. Surprisingly, contrary to popular belief, bananas have no fat and it would be impossible to get fat on bananas so your kids can enjoy these good fruits without any worries. In order to add more bananas to your kids’ diet, you can encourage them to eat a banana or to make some snacks such as banana cake or banana ice-cream.
These fruits have been praised for their vitamin C content. Just one orange contains enough vitamin C for two days! Oranges are also a rich source of fiber, some beta carotene and many other carotenoids. Besides, the natural sweetness comes from a deal of glucose, fructose as well as sucrose. In addition to this, the pith and peel of oranges are a good source of pectin which is a kind of soluble fiber and flavonoids, which may be good at preventing colds. Due to great benefits of oranges, you should encourage your kids to drink a cup of freshly squeezed orange juice or simply eat some pieces of oranges every day. Also, a combination of orange and carrot is a good juice for kids which helps to boost the immune system.
Similar to all citrus fruits, lemons are also an amazing source of vitamin C. 100ml of its juice will have 48mg of vitamin C, this is enough for a full day. Also, this fruit is rich in pectin, a kind of soluble dietary fiber which is used to set jams. According to some studies, soluble dietary fiber can help lower the levels of blood cholesterol. One thing you should keep in mind – it is important to rinse your kids’ mouth with water after eating lemons due to its high levels of acidity which can damage the tooth enamel. Do not brush the teeth immediately after eating them because the toothbrush is able to etch the acid into the tooth enamel.
These fruits are sweet with most of the natural sugar. They are a rich source of vitamin C and dietary fiber, and simultaneously provide small number of other vitamins and minerals, especially potassium. Besides, yellow-fleshed peaches contain beta carotene which the body will convert to vitamin A.
Their combination of sugars makes these fruits deliciously sweet. Their carbohydrates are digested slowly so the energy your kids get from grapes can last longer. Also, grapes are a rich source of dietary fiber, vitamin C and some other potassium. Grape skins have a plenty of antioxidants that are crucial for human health.
Pineapples contain an enzyme (bromelain), which can tenderize meat if used as a marinade. Also, these fruits are a good source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, and the mineral called manganese which is necessary to human bones, the cartilage in joints and the brain.
While these fruits’ skin color ranges from green to yellow to brown, the nutritional value of their white flesh is not different, but some are sweeter than the others as their natural sugar content may be higher. Pears contain a low GI. This means that the carbohydrate of pears will be digested slowly and gives you a longer source of energy. In addition to this, they also contain dietary fiber, vitamin C, some vitamin E and other minerals. Especially, pears are lower in potassium than most of other fruits and this is good for some kids who have to get a low- potassium diet due to particular kidney problems.
Avocados contain good fat, which is important for healthy hearts. It is a source of fatty acids and is nearly same to a healthy fat found in olive oil. Besides, avocados are a rich source of vitamin E, which maintains the red cells in the blood to be healthy, simultaneously helps prevent possible damage to the membranes, which protect every cell in human body. Also, avocados contain a lot of dietary fiber which aids to move foods through the bowls efficiently so you do not be constipated. Finally, these fruits are a great source of vitamin B6, which is needed for healthy skin, nervous system and for producing energy in kids’ bodies.
Some Ideas To Help Your Kids Eat More Fruits Without Getting Bored:
Here are some simple yet very useful tips to help parents include more fruits in their kids’ diets:
- Fresh fruit is better than fruit juice. While the whole fruit has some of the natural sugars which will make it taste sweet. It also contains a lot of vitamins, fiber and minerals which will make it more nutritious than a cup of fruit juice. A small cup of juice will provide a child daily amount of vitamin C. However, some kids regularly consumes large amount of fruit juice and this can make them put on excess weight.
- Choose fruits that are in season as they will be cheaper and more importantly, taste better.
- Always have a bowl of fresh fruits in your home so that your kids can eat whenever they are hungry or want something to snack on.
- Be creative in the way you prepare and serve fruits such as raw, sliced, mashed, baked, or serve some different colored fruits in different serving bowls and plates.
- Add fruits to your kids’ breakfast cereal.
- Snack on fruits: stewed fruit, frozen fruit, fruit crumble, or cakes and muffins made with fruits.
- Make a fruit smoothie with frozen, fresh or canned (unsweetened juice) fruits, and then mix it with reduced- fat milk and yogurts.
- Add chopped fruits to plain yogurts.
- In the summer, freeze fruits or mix with yogurt before freezing for a snack.
- Make fruit-based desserts such as crumble or baked fruit, stewed or poached fruit and serve with a little reduced-fat custard.
- To get the greatest benefit, make sure that you give them many different juices each week instead of only one type.
Writer and Blogger, who has over 5 years of experience in Beauty & Skin Care industry. I work for VKool.com and AllRemedies.com – reliable resources assisting people to resolve their health and life issues, as a content coordinator for categories including Health & Beauty. I also focus on fitness, women’s issues, relationship, and lifestyle. Find more of my articles on Facebook or Pinterest