Top fruits good for Teens and Kids

Teenagers undergo major physical development during their puberty phase. These physical changes are regulated by changes in the levels of hormones which are produced by the pituitary gland—luteinizing hormone (responsible for menstrual cycle in girls) and follicle-stimulating hormone (responsible for reproductive system in both girls and boys). Surprisingly, a new born baby has high level of these hormones which taper down in a couple of months. At adolescence, these hormones spike up again and cause major physical developments in the body of teens.

In the early puberty phase, luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone increase, resulting in major physical changes including weight gain, outbursts of acne, height gain and behavioural change like anxiety, hyper-activity and short-temperedness.

The recent lifestyle trend of teenagers has also added to much higher consumption of food which is high in both carbohydrates and fat (why is this bad?) This not only results in excessive weight gain, but also anxiety and stress leading to further hormonal imbalance.

Some (forgotten) seasonal fruits which can help solve these concerns of the growing kids are mentioned below.

Eating right assures an adequate amount of key nutrients like calcium, iron and vitamins A, C and D. Some teens need more nutrients than average intake, particularly if they extremely active in sports and do not eat variety of fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds regularly

SHAHTOOT (MULBERRY)

  • They have unusually high levels of protein and iron for a fruit. They are rich in dietary fibre which helps in fixing digestion issues like bloating, constipation.
  • A single serving of mulberries can meet the daily requirement of vitamin C, keeping the immunity high and lower stress, anxiety.
  • Mulberry is also high in vitamin A which strengthens the eyesight and reduces the strain on eyes.
  • It is rich in antioxidants which reduces early greying of hair and keeps the skin acne free.
  • BER (JUJUBE)
  • It is a good source of calcium, phosphorous that helps in developing and maintaining stronger bones and more height.
  • It also has a calming effect on the body and releases stress and anxiety.
  • This fruit helps in inducing sleep. In certain traditions, it has been used to treat insomnia.
  • Loaded with fibre, this fruit also helps to reduce constipation and other gastrointestinal issues.
  • Lastly, this fruit is loaded with antioxidants and Vitamin C which do wonders for keeping the skin acne-free.
  • JAMUN (INDIAN BLACKBERRY)
  • Just a bowl of this sweetish berry can serve half the daily requirement of vitamin C and Manganese, keeping the immunity of the body high. It is also high in antioxidants which keep the skin healthy.
  • These blackberries are loaded with fibre which is essential for easy digestion and solving bloating and stomach pain. It can give half the daily fibre in just a single bowl serving.
  • Over 35% of daily required Vitamin K in a single serving of this berry can keep the bones strong and control menstrual blood flow.
  • LYCHEE
  • This fruit is exceptionally high in Vitamin C which keeps the immunity of the body high and the skin healthy. A compound present in this food tends to have anti-viral properties also.
  • The high fibre content in the fruit helps to regulate bowel movement thereby solving constipation, bloating, stomach pain, and other tummy troubles.
  • Along with the high fibre content, this fruit also has a lot of water content which aids in maintaining healthy weight.
  • It is also loaded with calcium absorbing minerals resulting in stronger bones.
  • High level of copper and Vitamin Bs in the fruit help with reducing stress.
  • CHIKOO (SAPOTA)
  • This fruit is good for immunity because of its high Vitamin C content. It also keeps the skin healthy and helps treat acne.
  • The high dietary fibre in the food helps to solve the irritable bowel syndrome and works as a laxative to solve constipation.
  • It is also high in calcium and phosphorous which work together to keep the bones strong. Consuming this fruit early in life will take care of bones troubles in future.
  • Many other berries and fruits like Phalse (Wild Blueberry), Amla (Gooseberry), Karonda (Conkerberry), Lasoda (Glueberry), Nargundi
  • (Chasteberry) are loaded with goodness of health for growing kids. They are seasonally available and help to meet the daily Vitamin and Mineral requirements.
  • Some of these are sour in taste and best can be consumed in the form of pickle or sweetened drink. Some are bitter like chaste berries but offer tremendous health benefits in balancing hormones and reducing stress levels. They are available as powder supplements.

Recipe for Wheat Berry cookie

  • ½ cup wheat flour
  • ½ cup semolina
  • Handful of cranberries
  • Pinch salt
  • Honey (as per desired sweetness)
  • Milk (just little to puree cranberries)
  • 2 tbsp Ghee/ Butter unsalted
  • Pinch baking soda
  • Pinch cumin seeds (optional) or choco chips

Puree cranberries with milk. Mix all ingredients (except cumin seeds) into a soft sticky dough. Make balls and press lightly. Sprinkle cumin seeds on top and press. Place on baking sheet. Preheat 5 min at 180 celsius. Bake for 15-20 min. Once done, cool outside on rack. Enjoy!

3 supplements for brain for kids

Free radicals are essential to life and exists as a natural phenomena. Whenever we breathe or eat, our body breaks down the food into smaller molecules, some of which are highly reactive and unstable and need a partner to stabilise itself. In this process they snatch an electron from another molecule making that molecule deficient and unstable. This domino effect of trying to stabilise itself results in damage to other cells of the body.

Free radicals can be damaging when they outgrow in number and start impacting the cells in the body. Reducing free radicals in your body includes both reducing the chance they will form and providing your body with antioxidants. Antioxidants attach themselves to free radicals and neutralise their power without causing any further damage

Ayurvedic herbal medications are increasingly researched due to their biosafety profile and usefulness in cognitive impairment. They do not yield results over-night. Herbal supplements help only when they are taken for a prolonged period of time. Long-term consumption of purely crafted supplements do not make your body dependent on the herbal drug or supplement

Bramhi:

Our body has many free radical scavengers. Anti-oxidants protect our body against free radicle damage caused to our cells. They are found in two properties, enzymatic and non-enzymatic. Enzymatic ones act as a primary gateway of defence against free radicals while non-enzymatic ones like vitamin A, C, and E, selenium, coenzyme Q10, and glutathione (GSH) help antioxidant actions protect neuronal tissue from free radical damage.

Non-enzymatic anti-oxidants are found in food, while enzymatic ones are created by the body, during the metabolic process

Imbalance between antioxidants and free radicals is the basis for free radical damage resulting in aging and cognitive decline

Bramhi attacks the free radical scavengers and protects cells in prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, and DNA damage.  It reduces stress-induced hippocampal damage and hence is a great supplement for brain. Herbal supplements do not have harmful impact on the body. In older times, kids were often given Bramhi powder with ghee/honey

Ashwangandha

Ashwagandha is an adaptogen. Adaptogens are herbal supplements that work to counteract the effects of stress in the body. Stress causes very real physical changes in the body, including harming the neurological, endocrine, and immune systems. Adaptogens have stimulant properties that help counteract those harmful effects

 The root of Ashwagandha smells like horse (“ashwa”), that is why it is called Ashwagandha (on consuming it gives the power of a horse).

Ashwagandha is commonly available as a churna, a powder that can be mixed with water, ghee (clarified butter) or honey. It enhances the function of the brain and nervous system and improves the memory. It improves the function of the reproductive system promoting a healthy sexual and reproductive balance. Being a powerful adaptogen, it enhances the body’s resilience to stress. Ashwagandha improves the body’s defense against disease by improving the cell-mediated immunity.

It also possesses potent antioxidant properties that help protect against cellular damage caused by free radicals

It can be safely given to children, best when given in milk, The paste formed when roots are crushed with water is applied to reduce the inflammation in the body It is also locally applied on wounds, ulcers and painful swellings.

Curcumin

A compound found in turmeric, offers therapeutic relief. It is a rich antioxidant which supports against body cell damage. It has found to delay or reverse diseases or age related decrease in body functions.

Curcumin has a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which found in the brain and spinal cord that plays a key role in keeping nerve cells healthy, as well as regulating communication between nerve cells, which is critical for learning and memory for kids

Consuming turmeric on daily basis with black pepper helps to keep the nerve cells healthy. It works best when consumed with black pepper, ginger and some honey for taste.

Walnut: 5 reasons why kids should consume everyday

Survey of 150 parents reflected on the top concerns they had for their kids. Some of the concerns, mentioned below, can be improved with the consumption of just a single nut- Walnut! Consuming 2-5 walnuts for kids aged 3 to 15 years is enough to aid daily nutrition.

Brain: Walnut a high source of good fat Omega-3 which aids in brain development and maintaining good blood flow to the brain. The vitamin Bs present in the nut increase memory and cognition.

Immunity: High in Vitamin E antioxidant, walnut helps to fight of virus that attack the body and reduce free radicals.

Bones: Walnuts are rich in Magnesium and manganese which is crucial for bone development & strength and absorption of calcium in bones.

Anxiety/ Stress: Vitamin B, Omega3 and magnesium in walnut contribute towards a healthier nervous system, and keeping the stress levels and irritability low. Antioxidant Vitamin E also reduces the anxiety levels in kids.

Overall Growth: Walnut is a complete source of nutrition. The variety of vitamins and minerals present in the nut contribute to keeping high level of energy and good blood flow in the body. As a rich source of Biotin (Vit B7), walnuts are excellent for hair growth and health. Vitamin E in the nut supports healthy eyesight and supports formation of collagen resulting in younger and healthier looking skin.

Read more about Peanut, Almond, Organic food and Allergy below:

How to revive the Medicinal property of GHEE?

Ghee has always received special attention. From being considered a medicine to now being under the lenses (for being a saturated fat). The previous generations still consider Ghee to hold healing and digestion/ gut fixing ability.

Over the course of decades, the process of making Ghee has evolved. The modern method requires cream from milk to be heated until all the milk solid has settled and fat has been separated.

  • Traditionally, ghee was made with yogurt. Yogurt was set in clay pots to preserve and enhance the nutrients (calcium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, sulphur etc). It is then hand-churned to extract butter from it, leaving the whey (lactose) behind. This butter is simmered over a gentle heat to release the fat which is Ghee. This Bilona method of making ghee requires more quantity of cow’s milk compared to that of modern methods.

As you age, your body naturally starts to product less lactase (enzyme required to tolerate lactose from dairy). As a result of this, bloating, indigestion etc can happen with the consumption of dairy products, even if you were always a dairy lover. Traditional Ghee is lactose free and also a carrier of gut friendly bacterias (probiotic) because of being fermented (made of yogurt). These bacterias produce an advanced nutrient called K2 which aids in stronger bones.

In addition, this Ghee is also high in Vitamin A (good for Eyes and Immunity) and Omega 3 and 6 (good for Brain). It also portrays an excellent ratio of Omega3: Omega6 (1:4) making it a safer/ nutritious choice. No other commonly used oils have this ratio resulting in health damages.

A ghee made from desi cow’s milk yogurt using Bilona method is ideal for consumption.

Recipe for Nutty balls

Great for Immunity, Brain Development, Muscle strength and Digestion

  • 50g shredded coconut (frozen or fresh)
  • 2 dates
  • 4-5 fig
  • 3 cardamom powdered
  • 100g Fresh cottage cheese (mashed)
  • Honey or jaggery powder (as per taste)
  • 3 tbsp ghee
  • Fresh200ml milk or nut milk
  • Roasted nuts and granulated once cool
    • 10 cashew
    • 2 pecan
    • 10 almonds
    • 5 walnuts

No need to powder the nuts unless you or your child can’t eat otherwise. Mix all ingredients together with hand and then add milk as much as required to make round balls.

Serve! Store in refrigerator.

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TEFF BREAD

Teff flour has 6 times more fibre than wheat

NO OIL, NO EGG, NO DAIRY, NO WHITE FLOUR, NO GUILT

Recipe / Recommended Daily Intake (RDI)Calories (kcal)
(RDI 2000 kcal)
Fat (g)
(RDI 70g)
Protein (g)
(RDI 50g)
Sugar (g)
(RDI 25g)
Fibre (g)
(RDI 25g)

Magnesium (mg)
(RDI 250mg
)
Iron (mg)
(RDI 10 mg)
Calcium (mg)
(RDI 1000mg)
Vitamin B6 (mcg)
(RDI 1.3 mg)
Guilt Free Food Recipe (Loaf)9901429174715075000.7
Store Bread Recipe (Loaf)11001536201062810000.2
GFF recipe offers much higher fibre, Vit B-6 and Magnesium. Extra fibre in diet reduces weight, lowers cholesterol. Vit B-6 is needed for proper brain development in kids and function of it. Magnesium boosts body performance by keeping muscles and bones strong.
After Rise (part 1)

MIX (Wet)

  • 1.5 tsp yeast
  • 2 tsp Molasses or jaggery or coconut sugar
  • 1 ½ cups warm water (or little more)

MIX (Dry)

  • 1 cup Teff flour
  • 1/2 cup Ragi flour
  • 1/2 cup Potato starch
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 cup Chia seeds (grind into powder)
  • 1/4 cup Psyllium husk (Isabgol)

MAKE DOUGH

  • Keep aside 1/3 cup dry ingredients
  • Combine Wet and Dry
  • Make wet, sticky, shaggy dough (hush drinks water)

RISE (part -1)

  • Cover and rise for 1 hour in dry dark area

RISE (part-2)

  • Blend remaining dry ingredients into dough
  • Pat dough to make rectangle/square
  • Roll back to make log
  • Brush with any dry flour
  • Fit into greased bread pan (tuck edges inwards)
  • Cover and Rise for 45 minutes

BAKE

  • Preheat at 200 celsius for 5 minutes
  • Slit dough top in any design with sharp knife (optional)
  • Bake at 200 celsius for 60-70 minutes

Walnut: 5 reasons why kids should consume everyday

Survey of 150 parents reflected on the top concerns they had for their kids. Some of the concerns, mentioned below, can be improved with the consumption of just a single nut- Walnut! Consuming 2-5 walnuts for kids aged 3 to 15 years is enough to aid daily nutrition.

Brain: Walnut a high source of good fat Omega-3 which aids in brain development and maintaining good blood flow to the brain. The vitamin Bs present in the nut increase memory and cognition.

Immunity: High in Vitamin E antioxidant, walnut helps to fight of virus that attack the body and reduce free radicals.

Bones: Walnuts are rich in Magnesium and manganese which is crucial for bone development & strength and absorption of calcium in bones.

Anxiety/ Stress: Vitamin B, Omega3 and magnesium in walnut contribute towards a healthier nervous system, and keeping the stress levels and irritability low. Antioxidant Vitamin E also reduces the anxiety levels in kids.

Overall Growth: Walnut is a complete source of nutrition. The variety of vitamins and minerals present in the nut contribute to keeping high level of energy and good blood flow in the body. As a rich source of Biotin (Vit B7), walnuts are excellent for hair growth and health. Vitamin E in the nut supports healthy eyesight and supports formation of collagen resulting in younger and healthier looking skin.

Read more about Peanut, Almond, Organic food and Allergy below:

5 Min mango ice-cream

100% FRUIT, NO SUGAR, NO CREAM, NO CONDENSED MILK, NO GUILT

Recipe / Recommended Daily Intake (RDI)Calories (kcal)
(RDI 2000 kcal)
Protein (g)
(RDI 50g)
Cholesterol (mg)
(RDI 300mg)
Sugar (g)
(RDI 25g)
Guilt Free Food Recipe (1 Mango)5502080
Homemade Recipe w/ cream and condensed milk  (1 Mango)12004190154
Just by changing two ingredients, GFF recipe halves calories, considerably reduces sugar and cholesterol

FREEZE

  • Cut 1 large sweet Mango into small pieces
  • Freeze keeping pieces apart

BLEND IN A JAR

  • Frozen mango
  • 3 tbsp coconut cream
  • 2 tbsp honey or jaggery (as per taste)
  • 1/4 tsp Vanilla essence or cardamom powder (optional)

FREEZE

  • Freeze the mixture in a glass container with lid for an hour and serve

TIP

  • Keep the glass container in the freezer prior to pouring ice cream mixture to reduce ice crystals

What happens when you cook food in cast-iron pans/skillets

The correct cookware helps to not only add nutrients to the food, but also preserve the nutrients. For example, clay-pots have been used for thousands of years for cooking. A study reveals that compared to modern utensils (pressure cooker), clay-pots retained 100% nutrients when cooking Dal vs. under 15% when cooked in a pressure cooker (Shocking!)

The longer food is cooked or stored in Aluminium, the greater it gets into food. Leafy vegetables, tomatoes and citrus products absorb the most aluminium (more than what we need!). Aluminium is most often considered unsafe for cooking on account of the metal reacting with food and getting absorbed in large amounts. The presence of aluminium deposits in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients has made people wary of using them

Traditional cookware- copper, iron, brass etc add the required mineral to the body and also aid in healing the body.

Cooking in copper and brass is not advisable when it comes to salty and acidic food since they react with the metal but eating in these is useful .

Iron cookware is great since it releases the required mineral which is critical for our body functioning (for high energy!). Many people suffer from iron deficiency, and cooking with cast iron pans can help increase your iron content by as much as 20 times!

Food cooked for longer duration and with higher moisture content absorbed most iron (almost 5 times more iron after cooking compared to raw)

Cast iron vessels are naturally non-stick and are easy to cook. On the other hand, modern non-stick cookware releases per-fluorinated compounds into the food during cooking, especially if the food is scrapped from the bottom causing several health issues.

Cast-iron skillets are very versatile. They can be used for sautéing, pan-frying, searing, baking, braising, broiling, roasting, and even more cooking techniques. The more seasoned your cast-iron skillet is, the better flavour it’s going to give to whatever you are cooking

Cast-iron vessels need lesser oil for cooking and also keep the food warm for longer time.

BEAUTY PRO-TIP :

IF YOU USE HERBAL HENNA FOR COLORING YOUR HAIR, SOAK IT OVER-NIGHT IN AN IRON BOWL

Adding henna paste in an iron bowl get more darker colour. It forms a blackish pigment with iron and helps in covering the grey more effectively

Top Nuts and Seeds for Protein

The Protein Consumption in the Diet of Adult Indians Survey, a pan India survey stated that 9 out of 10 Indians consumed less than adequate proteins daily. 91% of the vegetarians and 85% of the non-vegetarians were consuming less food with protein. A typical-Indian meal served in homes of north or south or central India are most often protein deficient.

Protein is considered the body’s building block and repair agent. It’s also integral in forming enzymes and hormones in the body. From digestion to immunity, from hair to nails, everything requires protein. The suggested intake of protein is decided at 0.8 gm per kg of body weight. For athletes or kids in active sports, few studies state that it is best to eat protein within 30 minutes of exercise. This is the period when most of muscle formation or muscle repair happens, and timely protein consumption enables that.

One of the most common signs of not getting enough protein is swelling. This usually happens in legs, feet, hands or abdomen. Proteins circulate in blood and keep fluid from building up in tissues. In the absence of enough protein, fluid begins to collect together thereby resulting in swelling. More generally, kids who are protein deficient develop weaker bones and muscles, damaged skin, hair nails, lower immunity and also compromised or delayed physical growth.

Consuming Nuts and seeds is among the best food with protein to meet the daily requirement of the body and also among the best foods for children.

Peanut: Technically a legume, this nut is widely and easily available and affordable too. It is one of the most dense forms of protein. Just a handful of peanuts can give 9 g of protein to the body. In addition, it is a wonder full of over 30 nutrients. Read more.

Almond: The second best contender in the category with 8g of protein in just a handful of nuts. An expensive yet easily available source of high nutrition carries highest fibre in this nut category. Read more.

Pista: A seed of pistachio tree, this perceived nut offers 7g protein in a just a handful. This nut has the highest amount of potassium which is useful for kids to balance the negative impact of eating processed or junk food, which causes high sodium levels in the body. Potassium helps by balancing sodium levels which can otherwise impact bones, brain, digestion, muscles, and kidney.

Cashew: A favourite of many, this nut has 6g of protein in just a handful. It is a quick source of high quality carbohydrates for kids with variety of health benefits. Read more.

Walnut: Despite being a little less in protein at 5g per handful, this wonder nut is loaded with good fats which are vital for brain. Read more.

Hazelnut: Similar to walnut in its nutrition profile, this nut also has 5g of protein per handful. Preferred by kids in chocolates and spreads, this nut is a nutritious snack with lots of essential fat.

Seeds: Sunflower, Pumpkin and Melon together offer a great source of nourishment to the body. 1 tablespoon of this seed mix provides 5g of protein. A spread of this can easily blend with any dish and wont even get noticed by kids.

Soaking and consuming Almond, Peanut, Walnut enables release of phytic acid, resulting in more absorption of nutrients by the body.

Recipe for Chia Berry Cupcake:

  • 1cup Whole wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp chia powder mixed with 6 tbsp water (wait 5 min to become a lump and then add)
  • 3 tbsp yogurt
  • 3 tbsp almond butter
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (use milk to purée this in granular form)
  • Honey (as per sweetness required)
  • Drops of Vanilla essence
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup Milk (or as much as to make a thick batter)

Preheat oven at 200 Celsius for 5 minutes. Mix all ingredients together with your hand or mixer and transfer to oiled baking pan. Bake for 25 min in lower/middle rack.

Top it up with melted dark chocolate if you desire 🙂

Read more about nutrition for kids: