Growing Strong: Nourishing Kids with Calcium-Rich Foods

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Did you know that our bodies cannot produce calcium on their own? That's right. This is why it’s of utmost importance to include calcium-rich foods in your diet.[1] Especially when it comes to kids' growth and development, calcium plays a superhero role in building strong bones and teeth. So how can you ensure that your little ones are getting enough calcium in their diets? Through a diverse and delectable array of foods!

Let’s explore why calcium is imperative for your kids and what are some of the best foods that contain calcium.

Calcium for Kids: Why is it Important?

Calcium is not only essential for building strong bones and teeth, but it also plays a vital role in muscle function, nerve transmission, and hormonal secretion.[2] Ensuring that children receive enough calcium during their formative years can help prevent issues such as weak bones, fractures, and even osteoporosis later in life.[3] Additionally, adequate calcium intake supports healthy growth and development, which is especially important during periods of rapid growth, such as puberty.[4] As a result, it's crucial to include calcium food items in your child's diet to promote their overall health and well-being.

Best Calcium-Rich Foods for Kids

Kids and teens can often be fussy about eating healthy, but fear not! We have a list of some of the best calcium-rich foods you can sneak into delicious recipes that will have even the pickiest eaters asking for seconds. Here are some fantastic calcium food items:

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1. Leafy Green Vegetables

Leafy greens like spinach, kale, and collard greens are excellent sources of calcium. These vegetables are also packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making them a nutritious addition to any meal.

2. Ragi

Ragi, also known as finger millet, is a gluten-free grain that is rich in calcium. In addition to calcium, ragi is also rich in dietary fibre, which aids digestion and keeps children feeling full for longer periods.

3. Soybean

Soybeans and soy products, such as tofu and soy milk, are great sources of calcium. Additionally, soy is a high-quality plant-based protein and is considered to consist of all the essential amino acids, equal to what is found in milk and meat.

4. Fish

Certain types of fish, such as salmon and sardines, contain high levels of calcium. Including fish in your child's diet not only provides them with calcium but also offers omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for brain development.

5. Chickpeas

Chickpeas, also referred to as garbanzo beans, are a multipurpose legume that is high in calcium. They are a nourishing and filling option for kids as they are also high in protein and fibre.

6. Nuts

Nuts like almonds and walnuts are a rich source of calcium in addition to offering healthy fats. However, keep in mind any potential nut allergies and select age-appropriate nuts to prevent choking dangers.

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7. Seeds

Seeds such as chia seeds, sesame seeds, and flaxseeds are excellent sources of calcium. Additionally, they are also a good source of proteins, fibre and healthy fats.

8. Beans and Lentils

Beans and lentils, such as black beans, kidney beans, and lentils have high calcium content.They're also packed with protein, fibre, and other essential nutrients.

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9. Fruits

While fruits may not be as rich in calcium as other dietary sources, they nevertheless add to your child's overall calcium intake. Oranges, figs, and kiwis are among the top fruits that are high in calcium and can be included as part of a healthy diet.

Horlicks - The Best Energy Drink

Scientifically formulated to make kids taller, stronger, and sharper, Horlicks is a children’s functional nutritional drink that has been clinically proven to improve 5 signs of child growth. It has bio-available nutrients that are quickly absorbed by the body and transported throughout the body via the bloodstream. For kids in their growing phase, Horlicks helps increase the density of minerals such as calcium in bones to give your kid stronger bones. So, if you’re looking for ways to make a glass of milk tastier for your little one, Horlicks is your pick!

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The Takeaway

The benefits of calcium extend far beyond childhood. By instilling healthy habits now, you are setting your children up for a lifetime of strong bones, optimal health, and reduced risk of diseases in the future. So, embrace the power of calcium-rich foods and watch your children thrive. Your kids deserve nothing less than the best, and with calcium food items, you're giving them just that – a foundation for a healthy, strong, and vibrant future.

FAQs

 

1. Are calcium supplements safe for children?

It’s important to consult a healthcare professional to understand your child’s needs and if they need any supplements at all.

2. How to detect calcium deficiency in babies?

Calcium deficiency in babies may present with symptoms such as jitteriness, muscle cramps, irritability, or seizures. If you suspect calcium deficiency in your baby, it's important to consult a paediatrician who can evaluate their symptoms and conduct appropriate tests to diagnose and treat the deficiency.

3. How much glass of milk to complete calcium intake for a child?

The amount of milk required to meet a child's calcium intake depends on their age and dietary needs. Generally, toddlers between 1-2 years old may need 2-3 cups (16-24 oz) of milk per day, while children 2-5 years old may require 2-2.5 cups (16-20oz) of milk. Consult a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian who can provide personalised guidance based on your child's specific needs.

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