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Diet plan for school going children

Preethi R Nair, Chief Clinical Nutritionist, SUT Hospital, Pattom

Schools that have been closed for two years due to the Covid epidemic are reopening. For so long, the study has been conducted online. Parents are now in great anxiety. It is time to pay close attention to children’s diet and lifestyle. A balanced diet is essential to prevent the spread of infectious diseases such as Covid 19. Personal hygiene and boosting the immune system is the key to prevent infectious diseases.

Be careful not to skip breakfast. Children should be given protein-rich food daily. Milk, eggs, meat, nuts, and pulses should be included in the diet. Lack of breakfast will reduce the focus on study. Fruits and vegetables are rich in antioxidants. Foods rich in vitamins A, B6, C, D, E, and selenium should be included. Lemons, gooseberries, and carrots are good sources of vitamin C.

Calcium-rich foods are essential for growing children. It is important to drink a glass of milk daily as it is highly benefited to health. Dairy products (yogurt, buttermilk, paneer) can also be given. Leafy vegetables should be included at least three days a week. Fruit, nuts, and dried fruits can be given as snacks. Lunch can be included with tomato rice, yogurt rice, egg fried rice, and carrot rice for variety. Boiled bananas, flattened rice and ragi are the best dishes for a snack. Dinner should also be rich in protein. Red meat can only be used in moderation. Processed meats (bacon, hot dogs, and sausages) should be avoided. Consumption of saturated fat, Trans fat, salt, and sugar should be reduced. Use of fried foods and bakery sweets should be restricted.

Good food is the best medicine. Better diet can provide better health. We can protect the health of children by giving them nutritious and varied food.