As parents, we all worry about the nutrition that we provide to our children. We do everything possible to ensure that they get a complete and balanced meal each time. However, the focus is usually on fresh fruits and vegetables. Of course, they are vital, but, most often, we forget about one important nutrient, protein. Just a glass of milk or two eggs a day may not be enough. You need to find a good source of protein for kids that gives them their daily required intake.
How Much Protein Does Your Child Need?
In order to make sure that your child is getting enough protein, you need to know how much of it he or she needs.
Now, this depends upon two factors. First, the age of the child matters. Second, gender also plays an important role. While you are trying to find the best protein for children, you should also make sure that it meets the daily required value. Most of us know that inadequate consumption can lead to health issues. There is also the other end of the spectrum. Overconsumption of protein can also have unfavourable repercussions.
Usually, it is recommended that you consume one gram of protein per kilo of bodyweight. In the case of children, here are the approximate values according to age:
- 4-9 years- 19 grams each day
- 9-13 years- 34 grams each day
- 14-18 years (boys)- 52 grams each day
- 14-18 years (girls)- 46 grams each day
If you are unsure, it is a good idea to consult your doctor about the exact requirements for your child. Children who are into sports and athletics may require a higher intake of protein to help the body recover from intense training.
How To Make Sure Your Child Is Getting Enough Protein
There are several sources of protein for children that you can include in their diet. The best ones for children are as follows:
- Milk and dairy products: A glass of milk or some yoghurt and cheese is a great protein source. Dairy products are rich in whey proteins which is one of the most recommended sources. It is digested easily and also provides all the amino acids that your child needs.
- Eggs: Eggs are the most popular source of protein for children. Two eggs a day gives your 13g of it each day. It can be boiled, scrambled or even added to your child’s favourite dishes like pancakes.
- Meat: If you follow a non-vegetarian diet, then foods like fish and chicken are the best source of protein for your child. The advantage of non-vegetarian food is that they contain a higher level of it per serving. So, even with a small quantity, you will be able to fulfil your child’s daily required protein intake.
- Nuts: Almonds, pistachios, walnuts and other types of nut are the best protein for children who are vegetarian. Normally, kids love them which makes it easier for you to get them to eat it. Roasting them and adding flavours like honey can make a desirable snack that your child will not refuse.
- Lentils, beans and legumes: These are also recommended vegetarian protein sources. They have the highest concentration of plant-based protein which is healthy and easily digested.
Is A Protein Drink Good For Your Child?
Besides the above-mentioned sources, a good protein drink like Gritzo Supermilk is also a reliable source of protein for your child. These shakes have some unique benefits that give you a hassle-free source of protein:
- They give your child the right amount of protein: Every formula of a protein drink is specially calculated to include the right amount of protein-based on age-specific dietary needs. With these products, you also have different products for different ages as well as for children with different levels of physical activity. This saves you the trouble of checking how much protein content the foods that you provide your child with contain.
- Get the benefit of added nutrients: This type of drink is a good source of protein for kids, no doubt. It also includes vital nutrients like vitamins and minerals in each serving. This helps fulfil the child’s micronutrient intake as well. Even with the vitamins and minerals, the amount is calculated based on the dietary requirements based on your child’s age.
- They are easy to consume: You can mix this shake in a glass of milk or add it to foods like biscuits or pancakes to enrich them with protein.
Choose shakes that have natural sweeteners for the best benefits. Also, ensure that you check the label thoroughly before buying. The fewer the ingredients, the safer the product is for your child.
When To Choose a Protein Drink
One serving of a good protein drink every day gives you the assurance that your child is getting an adequate amount. However, there are some cases when it is the best protein for children:
- Your diet is primarily vegetarian- You need to consume a large number of vegetarian protein sources to get the necessary amount of the nutrient. Therefore, it is harder to fulfil these needs with a vegetarian diet, although not impossible.
- When your child is a fussy eater- These drinks can be transformed into baked goodies, thick milkshakes and snacks that your child will love. So it is easier to deal with fussy eating and still make sure that your child has enough protein intake.
- For children who are active- A good source of protein for kids who are into sports and athletics is a must. This ensures faster recovery and allows them to perform to their best abilities.
Of course, these drinks must not be used as replacements for your child’s meal. They only act as supplements to your child’s diet to make sure that it fulfils all the nutritional requirements.