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What Foods Boost a Child's IQ? - This May Surprise You

Updated on September 10, 2017
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Gasoline gas is a sex therepist at The Agha Khan hospital with expansive knowledge in nutritional remedies.

Foods that boost a child's IQ

What you need to know about brain development

Before we delve into the specific foods you need to give your child for proper brain development, you have to get concrete facts about how and when your child's brain develops. Primarily, nutrients and other growth factors control brain development during fetal and early postnatal life. The fast brain development process may be more vulnerable to nutrient deficiency. Specific nutrients impact on the brain development cycle. They include;

  • proteins and energy
  • long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids
  • iron
  • zinc
  • copper
  • iodine
  • selenium
  • vitamin A

The brain development between the 6th and 11th month of gestation is specifically dependent on nutritional insults. This is due to the rapid direction of several neurological processes. These processes h include synapse formation and myelination. On the contrary, the young brain is very plastic hence responsive to repair after nutrient repletion.

Protein and energy deficiency

Protein and energy deficiency in fetal and early neonatal life scales down neuronal DNA and RNA content and modifies the fatty acid profile. Judging this neuropathologically, we find a reduction in the neuronal number, protein synthesis reduction, and hypomyelination. The size of the brain is therefore reduced through all of these processes owing to the changes in structural proteins, the growth concentration factor, and the production of neurotransmitters. Ultrastructural alterations consist of; reductions in synapse number and dendritic arbor complexity. The cortex and hippocampus are notably vulnerable to protein and energy deficiency.

Importance of iron

Iron is so critical as it is accreted rapidly by the fetus in the last trimester. It is vital in the basic neuronal processes like myelination, production of neurotransmitters, and energy metabolism. Looking at this biochemically, deficiency in iron results in reduced oxidative metabolism in the hippocampus and frontal cortex. It may lead to increased intracellular neuronal glutamate and striatal dopamine concentrations it also alters fatty acid and myelin profiles all over the brain. Structural changes such as dendritic arbors are truncated in the hippocampus.

The role of zinc

Zinc functions as a cofactor in enzymes that mediate protein and nucleic acid biochemistry. When the fetus lacks zinc it leads to decreased content of DNA, RNA, and protein in the brain. Zinc also regulates insulin-like growth factor I and growth hormone receptor gene expression. Fetuses of mothers who lack zinc portray reduced fetal movement and heart rate variability, which is a suggestion of an altered autonomic nervous system stability.

The essence of copper

Copper serves as an important divalent cation for proteins that function in the brain in various metabolic processes that include; protein and energy generation, dopamine process, antioxidant activity, and iron accretion in the young brain.

Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids

Long –chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, particularly docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), are neurobiological agents which may greatly have influence in neuronal membrane structure formation, synaptogenesis, and myelination.

List of foods that boost your child's IQ


Extensive research on blueberries on the benefits to the nervous system and brain health show that actually, blueberries can improve memory.

Blueberries can be frozen without doing damage to their delicate anthocyanin antioxidants. They have delicate antioxidant nutrients that include many types of anthocyanins e.g malvidins, delphinidins, pelargonidins, cyanidins, and peonidins.

Blueberries play a large role in cognitive protection. This is due to nerve cell protection from oxygen damage, they have a vast array of antioxidant nutrients. Nerve cells possess a high risk of oxygen damage hence the need of a special antioxidant protection at all times. The ability of nerves to send signals throughout the body is dependent on the presence of a balanced oxygen metabolism; this balance is therefore achieved through the intake of antioxidant nutrients. Blueberries lower the risk of oxidative stress in our nerve cells, therefore helping the maintenance of a smoothly working nerve cell and cognitive function.

Chia seeds

Chia seeds are tiny black seeds of the chia plant (Salvia hispanica). Their origin is Mexico and Guatemala. They served as staple food for the ancient Aztecs and Mayans. The word "chia" is a Mayan meaning "strength". These seeds contain large amounts of fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, they also have plenty high-quality protein, several essential minerals, and antioxidants.

Pumpkin seeds

Pumpkin seeds are a very rich source of zinc. One ounce contains more than 2 mg of Zinc. They also contain Omega-3 fats (alpha-linolenic acid or ALA) which are converted by the body into EPA and DHA by an enzyme

Lentil pasta

Lentil pasta especially organic red is a source of energy recommended for your child's brain development. It is recommended for a pregnant mother since the nutrients thereafter pass the child for proper brain development. It contains 281g of calories and 28% iron. These are essential as portrayed above in brain development.

Hemp seeds

Hemp seeds are from the hemp plant (cannabis sativa). Marijuana also comes from the same plant but hemp seeds only contain a very small amount of THC, which is the active ingredient in marijuana, therefore they will not get you high. Hemp seeds are therefore so safe and healthy to eat. They contain excellent balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, perfect protein containing all 20 amino acids,



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