School uses up a lot of energy, so proper nutrition and good gut health is vital to help keep our kids focused throughout the day.
We tend to look for outward signs of our childrens’ health and wellbeing. But the key to happy healthy kids may well be linked to the internal workings of the digestive system and the balance of the gut microbiome.
Current research is highlighting the importance of the brain-gut axis—a complex neural network connecting the brain with the gut nervous system. Because of this gut-brain connection, the microbes in the digestive tract have a strong influence over emotions. When the gut microbiome contains enough friendly flora, it’s able to help balance mood, especially those interesting adolescent hormones.
Healthy gut microbes encourage a positive mood, less emotional reactivity and stress. Also 80% of our immune system is located in the gut, so a good gut microbiome helps boost the immune system and increases our childrens’ resistance to colds and flu. An unhappy gut in our kids can play havoc with their emotions, as well as cause absorption and digestive issues.
Tips to help boost gut health:
- Send them off with a good healthy breakfast with a mix of probiotic and prebiotic fibre like a good quality muesli with fresh fruit, or fruit and yoghurt. Add a sprinkle of Grainfields Powder for an extra boost, or whip them up a delicious nutritious Grainfields smoothie. Fermented foods like Grainfields are so easy to incorporate into their everyday diet.
- Cut down on processed foods. Reduce sugar laden snacks and instead fill their lunch boxes with healthy options such as fresh fruit, yoghurt and homemade treats. Our Grainfields Zing, Protein and Hemp are also nutritious lunch box snacks and contain good flora as an added bonus.
- Get them to check the loo. Runny or constipated/ painful stools can mean something is not quite right with their digestive health.
- Where possible avoid over use of antibiotics. There are times when they are needed but they do kill off gut flora. Use a probiotic or fermented food supplement like Grainfields drinks and powders to re- establish good flora in the digestive system.
- Ensure they get into the habit of drinking plenty of water as this helps aid digestion, flush out toxins, reduce constipation and improve brain function.
The best news is that vibrant digestive health can also help support kids weight management and keep their skin looking healthy. This helps boost their self-confidence and outlook on life as they grow.
Sources—Yurgelun-Todd, D. (2007). Emotional and cognitive changes during adolescence. Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 17(2), 251-257. doi:10.1016/j.conb.2007.03.009. NIMH » The Teen Brain: 6 Things to Know.