Nutrients are very important for our body and we need them in proper amounts to grow and be healthy. They are of two types – Macronutrients and Micronutrients.
Macronutrients are the nutrients which give us quick energy and are very important to us. Three main macronutrients are- Proteins, Carbohydrates, and Fats. These three work together for our body and although carbohydrates have got a bad name lately, they are needed for the body in the same way as other nutrients.
As a dietician, I never recommend crash diets or any diet which has no carbohydrates in them. They are important to keep our energy levels in check.
Vitamins and minerals are two micronutrients that we get from the food we eat and need these in proper amounts to avoid any micronutrient deficiencies. Cells need them to make energy in our body.
It is called ‘Hidden Hunger’ and it develops slowly but causes irreversible damage to the body. It is very common in India where due to poverty, many moms are not able to provide healthy and nutritious food to the kids. As a result, they develop problems like cognitive delays, weak immunity, stunted growth, and low immunity.
After 6 months of age, an infant is more prone to nutritional deficiencies as the needs for micronutrients are more. Mostly mothers focus on the physical growth of the child and do not understand that they need nutrients for the brain development as well.
Diet makes a huge difference and if it’s rich in only carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, it will support only physical growth. Micronutrients are essential for the overall development of the child. So, it’s not necessary that if a child looks physically healthy, he/she will not be suffering from deficiencies. It is important to pay attention to micronutrients such as calcium, vitamins, and minerals. There is a high morbidity rate in India in Infants due to problems like diarrhea and viral infections.
Pediatrics highlight that Iron deficiency in infants is linked to impaired cognition, needs attention in the early years of life
Nutritional iron deficiency happens when physiological requirements cannot be met by iron absorption from the normal diet. Infants are at high risk due to their rapid growth and limited dietary sources. In India, iron deficiency is highest (49.5%) among children in the age group of 6-23 months. Studies have shown that Indian children aged 1-3 years consume only one-third of the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for iron. Iron plays a very important role in a baby’s brain development and cognition, and iron and zinc help in the development of baby’s immunity.
90% of the brain develops in the first 1000 days. Mild iron deficiency in the first 1000 days can also lead to impaired cognitive function in a child’s later life.
Why is it important to act early on your child’s nutrition needs?
Diet plays a major role and childhood is the foundation. Malnutrition is the major cause of infant’s death across the world. First 1000 days of life are very important for overall development of the child. As they grow older, these things are not easy to correct.
So, nutritional requirements need to be seen on the priority basis as micronutrient deficiencies are leading to a lot of helath problems.
Healthy and nutritious food are the priority and the role of micronutrients should not be forgotten.
May 12, 2017 at 10:24 pm
Very important information explained very well, Deepa. I hope more new mothers read this post
May 12, 2017 at 11:21 pm
Thanks Mayuri 🙂
May 12, 2017 at 10:29 pm
Very useful info. Thanks for sharing..
May 12, 2017 at 11:22 pm
May 13, 2017 at 1:22 pm
Good post well written. <a href="https://riseandsoar.com/early-morning-boost/" Early Morning Boost to Your Immunity System.
May 13, 2017 at 2:11 pm
Sending again as I messed up the link. Sorry!
Good post, well written. I wish more parents would read this and take it to heart. Early Morning Boost for Your Immune System
May 13, 2017 at 7:02 pm
Thank you Shirley 🙂
May 13, 2017 at 8:44 pm
Do you think it is better to give nutritional supplements like vitamin tablets etc rather than force children to eat vegetables and fruits that they definitely don’t like? It’s quite hard to get them to eat healthy when everyone around them is stuffing themselves on junk.
May 13, 2017 at 10:15 pm
I do not recommend nutritional supplements until and unless it is really needed. Fresh fruits and veggies are the best. Thanks for reading 🙂
May 14, 2017 at 7:09 am
May 14, 2017 at 1:21 am
That’s a very important topic that you have discussed Deepa.Enjoyed reading it.Diet is very important in the first few years if life .
May 15, 2017 at 12:01 am
Thanks Amrita 🙂
May 14, 2017 at 5:54 pm
Yes, micronutrients are very important… thank you for this informative article, stressing on how it is essential that we take care of our diet.
May 15, 2017 at 12:02 am
Thanks raj 🙂
May 15, 2017 at 10:35 pm
Thank you for this very informative post, Deepa. Kids these days are either undernourished or obese because of all the junk food they survive on! It’s so important that mothers know about nutrients and the effects of their deficiencies. I hope many more mothers read this post and make necessary changes in the diet of their kids
May 15, 2017 at 11:33 pm
Thanks Shilpa. Glad you liked it 🙂
May 18, 2017 at 6:19 pm
This is so important to keep in mind. I tried to make sure my kids got what they needed when they were small. I still work on it now. My daughter eats more fruits and veggies than her brother, that’s for sure.
May 18, 2017 at 7:18 pm
Yes its important to make sure kids are getting enough nutrients..Thanks 🙂
May 18, 2017 at 8:03 pm
Very interesting article. I had NO idea that 90% of the brain develops in the first 1000 days. Micronutrients are so important that’s why we make sure to take plant based liquid vitamins that include them in our daily recommended amounts.
It’s so sad that there are children who aren’t getting what they need. 🙁
May 18, 2017 at 11:02 pm
Thanks Erin 🙂
May 18, 2017 at 11:48 pm
I do not have kids yet but loved reading and learning about this. I am low in Iron and don’t eat a lot of fruits and vegetables but know that it is very important not only for me but for my future children as they develop and grow.
May 19, 2017 at 9:46 am
May 19, 2017 at 12:54 am
This is a great article for reference. I’ve worked with dietitians before and I have great respect for what they do. Many health problems could be eliminated if people followed their advice.
May 19, 2017 at 9:46 am
Thanks..glad you liked it
May 19, 2017 at 1:07 am
Elias was such a good eater when he was a baby. He is now 4 so the whole “eat your veggies” has become a war. At least he eats a lot of fruits.
May 19, 2017 at 9:47 am
Its good if they have fruits. Thanks for reading
May 19, 2017 at 8:53 am
Love how detailed this article is and hope many people read it and have an appreciation for marco and micro nutrients
May 19, 2017 at 9:48 am
May 19, 2017 at 11:05 am
Thank you for this information. It is very concise and very informative about the nutrients we need.
May 19, 2017 at 11:55 am
May 19, 2017 at 11:09 am
Great post! I found this information really helpful. I really love how indepeth this post is.
May 19, 2017 at 11:56 am
Thank you Tasheena
May 20, 2017 at 12:40 am
Very detailed oriented post explaining macro and micro nutrients! This post is really helpful for everyone having kids. Even as an adult, I’ve seen many women’s suffering from Anemia!
May 20, 2017 at 3:32 pm
Thanks Ana 🙂
May 21, 2017 at 2:43 pm
Wow it’s true what they say. You don’t know what you don’t know. I don’t have children yet but I’m surrounded by a bunch and I didn’t know these statics and just assumed physical growth was enough. But I will spread this knowledge. Thank you.
May 21, 2017 at 4:03 pm
Thanks Lakisha 🙂
May 23, 2017 at 11:52 am
I’m always looking for more info in relation to nutrition, especially in kids, so thanks!
May 23, 2017 at 5:36 pm