In this post from New Hope, Jack Chellam highlights the smart pill that can help parents in improving reading, memory and emotional well-being of children and early adolescents.
All parents hope that their children will reach their full potential. Putting hope aside, the formula for starting kids on the proper path includes nourishing them with healthy foods and supporting their scholastic development—and perhaps giving them one or two research-backed supplements.
Children and early adolescents grow and change rapidly, and they develop best when they receive a steady supply of high-quality nutrients. Yet as simple as that sounds, the reality is that kids today are often surrounded by nutrient-void junk food. This makes it easy for children to develop nutritional imbalances or deficiencies, which often first become evident in the form of poor cognition, low moods and behavioral problems. That’s where certain brain-supporting supplements can be a huge help.
Of all the brain-boosting nutrients, omega-3 fatty acids may be the most critical. “Studies have shown that children with poor cognitive performance and behavior benefit from omega-3s in terms of [attitude] and improved reading and memory,” says Samantha Brody, ND, of the Evergreen Natural Health Center in Portland, Oregon. It’s no wonder, then, that omega-3s are among the top-selling children’s supplements.
Additionally, herbs such as St. John’s wort and Pycnogenol—an antioxidant complex obtained from French maritime pine bark—have also been shown to support children’s cognitive and emotional well-being. Vitamin D is another science-backed nutrient for kids’ brains.
To enhance learning
To boost mood and add focus
Dose: For omega-3s, suggest the same as above. For St. John’s wort, recommend 100 to 300 mg three times daily, with the higher dose reserved for older and bigger kids. For vitamin D, suggest 1,000 IU daily.