Moms: Go Beyond Nutrition For A Healthy Brain Boosting Breakfast For Your Kids

by Dr. Michael E Rosenbaum, MD
(Torrance, CA)

In the midst of the weekday morning whirlwind, many of us barely give breakfast a second thought.
But did you know breakfast can impact not only your children’s whole day – but even their life?
Children who get a good breakfast regularly perform better in school and score higher on IQ tests. With fuel for the day, their brain can function at top notch.

A good breakfast includes:

• Protein for making neurotransmitters, essential for proper brain functioning.
• Some whole grains for energy;
• Antioxidant-rich foods like chlorella or blueberries.
• Healthy fats used to build brain tissue and hormones.

However, it’s not just what they eat, but how they eat that contributes to breakfast’s importance.

Here are two important breakfast ingredients that are often overlooked despite the fact they can magnify a good breakfast’s impact on your child.
Eat Together To Make Breakfast Healthy.

As researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing discovered, children who skipped breakfasts regularly scored 5.58 points lower in verbal IQ tests and a full 4.6 points in overall IQ.

But while lead researcher, Dr. Jianghong-Liu, PhD, RN, FAAN, noted that getting morning fuel was part of this equation, she also pointed out something else was happening . . .

As Dr. Liu explained, eating breakfast together gives your child a head start in brain development. A sprinkle of conversation on top of your kids’ meal helps them:

• Work on verbal skills;
• Give their memory a kick as they remember stories; and
• Simply acquire some general knowledge before the school bell rings.

But ditching solo breakfast on the run isn’t the only ingredient that can boost brain power . . .
Reduce The Stress To Make Breakfast Healthy
I know it’s hard to eliminate stress entirely in the morning. Just the alarm itself can be stressful.

But minimizing stress’ presence in your morning can pay off hugely in how your child gets through the day.

• Stress shrinks the brain’s ability to form memories by shrinking the hippocampus, the part of the brain linked to memory. When your child is stressed in the morning, she or he will have a more difficult time remembering things throughout the day.

• Recent research also shows how repeated stress interferes with the development of the prefontal cortex. This part of the brain helps you problem-solve and pay attention. When your children’s prefrontal cortex is handicapped, it can hamper your child’s performance in math and science. And it can also lead to behavior problems at school.

Importantly, while stress impacts our adult brains similarly, our kids suffer even more. Children’s developing brains are particularly sensitive to stress hormones.
A Healthy Breakfast Routine Prepares Your Child For Success.

I certainly understand how challenging mornings are. Finding time to sit together, let alone with relative calm, may seem impossible.
Nonetheless, just a few shifts in your routine can help turn this around.

• Prep in advance the ingredients for several days’ worth of quick healthy breakfasts: Chop fruit and greens for smoothies. Or scrambled eggs for egg burritos. For an extra boost of nutrition, I like to sprinkle chlorella granules on whatever I’m eating.

• Help your children get organized the night before with clothes laid out and backpacks packed.

And then use the time you gain to sit down with your children for breakfast. While you nourish your bodies with food, you can also nourish the mind with calm and conversation.

University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing (2013, February 5). Can breakfast make kids smarter? ScienceDaily.
Lawson W. Brain Power: Why Proteins Are Smart. Psychology Today. 2003.
Manning, A. Nutritious Foods To Boost Your Energy. USA Today, 2011.
Martin, R. Blueberries. Life Extension Magazine, 2006.
Enig M. Eat Fat Lose Fat. Plume Publishing, 2005. P. 25
University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing (2013, February 5). Can breakfast make kids smarter? ScienceDaily.
Middlebrooks JS. The Effects Of Childhood Stress on Health Across The Lifespan. National Center for Injury Prevention and Control of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2008

By Dr. Michael E. Rosenbaum is a 35-year veteran and widely recognized pioneer in the field of nutritional medicine, alternative healthcare and medical acupuncture.

He is also a member of Sun Chlorella USA's Advisory Board.
Want to learn more about what the medical world is missing? Get Sun Chlorella USA's FREE report, "Why Didn't My Doctor Tell Me This?" In this eye-opening report, 5 pioneering natural health experts reveal nutritional secrets that can change your life.

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