Giving kids the nutrition they require is the priority of most parents, but this can be a difficult task to carry out because of our stress-filled lives and busy schedules. While this may not seem like a big deal, failing to provide adequate nutrients can create a nutritional gap. Growing kids often suffer from a nutritional gap, especially in essential vitamins such as Vitamin D and minerals like calcium. This can lead to severe health complications in the long run, which is why you need to supplement your kid’s diet with protein powder for children.
You need to ensure that every meal that your child consumes is rich in vital food groups such as lean proteins, complex carbs, and healthy fats, in addition to micronutrients like magnesium, calcium, and potassium. This may not be an easy task if your child is a fussy eater who won’t eat their green. Sneaking in the best health drinks for child growth in their diet can help them get these essential nutrients without your child noticing.
However, with hundreds of health drinks for kids being advertised in the market, it can be confusing to determine which one to buy. Let us delve deeper into protein powder for children and understand what you need to keep in mind while purchasing them.
Make Sure It Has The Right Vitamins
There are a few essential nutrients that you need to ensure are present in the protein powder for children you are purchasing for your child, such as:
- Vitamin A: It is necessary to ensure body functions such as proper growth and development of the bones, aiding tissue repair, and maintaining your child’s vision. Having a Vitamin A deficiency can lead to night blindness and the risk of bacterial infection.
- Vitamin B: Vitamin B consumption is essential for the body as it plays a significant role in boosting its metabolic activity and maintaining your child’s energy levels throughout the day. Vitamin B deficiency can cause complications such as a damaged nervous system and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia.
- Vitamin C: Consumption of Vitamin C is beneficial for developing muscles and improving the condition of connective tissues such as skin. Lack of Vitamin C can lead to the development of scurvy and gum bleeding.
Check For Essential Minerals
Apart from vitamins, your child also needs essential minerals such as the following to ensure proper growth and development:
- Iron: Consumption of iron is essential for the formation of haemoglobin – a component of the red blood cells. Most children in India suffer from an iron deficiency, which leads to anaemia, which is characterised by weakness and fatigue. Leafy green vegetables such as spinach and kale and animal-based protein such as red meat are excellent iron sources.
- Zinc: Zinc plays a significant role in the growth and development of your body and is responsible for carrying out various functions that sustain your body, such as boosting metabolic activity, regulating blood circulation, and preventing your body from developing illnesses like a common cold.
Check For The Sugar Content
Most of the health drinks available in the market have high sugar content. Companies employ additional sugar usage to kid your child’s body into thinking it has more energy.
Always make sure to check the sugar content of the protein powder for children that you purchase. Excess sugar intake is counterproductive to your child’s growth and can lead to complications such as diabetes and blurred vision.
Most health drinks also employ synthetic vitamins that are loaded with hydrogenated oils and trans fats, which, while filling in the nutritional gap, can be harmful to your child in the long run. Give your preference to organic health powders as they are a purer source of ingredients, which is also beneficial for your child’s development.
Avoid Artificial Flavouring
Several health drinks in the market are marketed in various flavours and fun colours to make them more appealing to your child. However, these artificial flavourings can harm your child’s health when taken for too long. Make sure to select health drinks that have as little artificial flavouring as possible.
Check If It’s Suitable For Your Child
There are various types of health drinks in the market that are designed specifically for different age groups, which is why you must always make sure to read the packaging description of the health drink you’re purchasing.
Opt For Easily Absorbable Minerals
When looking into protein powder for children, you may notice that most of the nutrients come in different forms and names, even though they belong to the same class of vitamins. This differentiation is to distinguish how well these nutrients can be absorbed and utilised by the body. Always ensure to purchase health drinks with the most bioavailable form of minerals to get the best nutrition for your child.
Make Sure It Tastes Good
No child likes to drink a flat glass of milk, and at the same time, as parents, you cannot let their nutrition gaps be left unfulfilled. A reasonable compromise to make would be to invest in a protein powder for children that is nutritious and tasty. There are several health drinks in the market that come in a variety of flavours. Please choose what your child likes best and watch them get their daily dose of nutrition and fun.
Watch Out For Iron
While iron is an essential mineral required for your child’s health, too much iron can be hazardous, possibly even fatal for your child’s health. A good habit to develop is to check the product label of the protein powder for children that you are purchasing and cross-reference the iron content with the recommended daily allowance of iron as per your child’s gender and age. Doing this for all vitamins and minerals in the product lets you double-check if your child is getting the nutrition that they require and ensure that you don’t go overboard with it.
Free of Allergens
Most protein powders for children have substances like yeast, dairy, soy, corn sugars, or nuts used in their manufacturing process. Always check the product label of the health drink that you are purchasing for allergens such as these to prevent any unwanted side effects.