In this article, we will discuss the foods that help children grow taller. If you are worried about what to eat to grow taller fast, ready this article. The height of each individual is mainly determined by genetics. Experts believe 80% of the height of an individual is based on genes. If both the parents are tall, the child is likely to be tall. However, many studies found that environmental factors such as nutrition and lifestyle can also influence the height of an individual, especially in their growing years (1).
We cannot do much to alter the genes, though what sort of nutrition we provide to facilitate our kid’s growth can be easily regulated. Children tend to grow in spurts. Between the ages of 6-8 years, they have a slightly increased growth rate between and about 25% of growth in height occurs during puberty. Therefore parents should ensure their children consume foods that stimulate the production of the growth hormone and also stimulate bone growth. In this article, we have listed 11 such foods that can contribute to the overall physical development of your kid.
Here is a list of 11 best foods that help children grow taller.
Eggs are great sources of protein, iron, biotin, and riboflavin. Protein facilitates regular cell growth and development. A study found that malnourished children who consumed a high-protein diet over a period grew taller compared to those who ate standard protein.
Egg white is a concentrated source of protein. Including eggs in the daily diet is very essential and healthy for your child. Having eggs for breakfast, be it omelet or scrambled or boiled is a great way to start their day and ensure they get all the essential proteins. However, some people may be allergic to eggs, so do use the 3-7 days trial rule.
2. Dairy And Dairy Products
Milk as we all know is a rich source of protein and calcium. These minerals are very helpful for the growth of bones and also develop strength. Dairy products like cheese, cottage cheese, curd, and yogurt have high calcium and vitamin contents which are essential for bone mineralization in children. Get your kids to drink a glass or two of milk every day, however fussy they get. You can also make dishes that are filled with the goodness of milk.
If your child is lactose intolerant, you can replace cow or buffalo’s milk with any plant-derived milk, but make sure you consult a pediatrician first.
Soybean is a protein-rich food that contains most of the amino acids we need to get from food to build proteins in the body. While they are likely to be helpful in improving optimal bone health, the mechanisms are still not clear.
Experts believe you can feed to your kids around 5-10 grams of soy protein daily i.e., the equivalent of ½ cup cooked soybeans, ½ cup tofu, 1 cup of soy milk, or 1-ounce soy nuts. You can find many easy recipes for delicious soybeans dishes that your kids will love.
Poultry meat is a rich source of protein, along with B vitamins such as B6, thiamin, and pantothenic acid. It helps the growth and development of children. Research on the physical growth of young children belonging to low-income groups found that good quality protein from chicken or other poultry meat is essential to accelerate growth and development.
Chicken is not only a healthy option for growing kids but it is also filling. Their stomach will stay full for hours even if they consume only a small amount. This reduces the craving for snacking on unhealthy food later in the day. You can try out different recipes according to the child’s taste to improve their protein intake.
5. Green Leafy Vegetables
Green leafy vegetables along with giving your kids strength is also an essential supplier of a good amount of calcium. The calcium in leafy vegetables such as kale, Chinese cabbage, and broccoli balances bone resorption and deposition, which varies according to age. Bone resorption is the breaking down of tissue in the bone to release minerals, whereas bone deposition is the building of tissue in the bone by deposition of minerals. In children and adolescents, bone formation is more than resorption, which supports bone growth.
Spinach is an iron-rich leafy vegetable. YOu get 6.43 mg of iron from 1 cup (180 g) of spinach, which meets 36% of DV. You can add green leafy vegetables to soups and stews, sandwiches, pasta, guacamole, and smoothies.
Carrots are high in beta-carotene, which our body converts into vitamin A. Including raw carrots in your regular diet helps the body absorb calcium more efficiently. This promotes bone resorption and keeps them healthy. Children generally love carrots, so you can add them to salads, sandwiches, or even make fresh carrot juice.
Fruits are a great source for essential micronutrients that help in boosting immunity and also accelerating growth and development as they are rich in vitamins and minerals. Parents should ensure there are at least 1-2 servings of fruit in the child’s daily diet. You can also chop fruits into their breakfast cereals to make them colorful and delicious. Do not stick to one fruit, include as many varieties of fruits each day as possible to meet the daily requirements.
8. Whole Grains
Whole grains provide high quantities of iron, vitamin B, zinc, magnesium, and selenium along with a small amount of calcium. All these minerals play an important role in the growth and mineralization of bones. Replace plain bread with whole-grain bread and also feed your kids pasta as well as cereals made from whole grains.
Yogurt is a highly nutritious source of calcium, protein, zinc, and vitamin D. A study stated that there is a positive correlation between probiotic intake and growth and the development of undernourished children. However, more research is warranted to understand and establish this correlation. If your kids do not love to eat yogurt as it is, you can flavor them with fruits. Cheese is also a good alternative to yogurt as it is also rich in calcium, proteins, and vitamin D.
10. Mixed Nuts
Nuts are a rich source of many essential nutrients such as vitamins, proteins, minerals, and healthy fats. The rich omega-3 fatty acids that nuts provide are very beneficial for bone health and turnover. The proteins in nuts are also vital for the growth and development of your kid. In their daily diet add 15g of nuts, either as a snack or topping on cereals or other breakfast dishes. You can add powdered nuts to porridges.
Nut allergy or intolerance is quite common among children nowadays. So look carefully for allergic reactions and consult a pediatrician before introducing any new foods.
11. Pulses And Beans
Pulses and beans are other amazing sources of protein but they have a very minute amount of amino acids. So combine them with cereals, or other recipes, as they help improve digestion as well as proper growth.
Your child’s height is majorly determined by their genes. YOu can not expect the foods to have an overnight effect on your child’s height but it will surely contribute in the long run. Énsuring a balanced diet with all the above-listed foods along with a healthy lifestyle can help in boosting the child’s growth and development along with his overall health.
Moreover, you need to avoid certain foods that can have detrimental effects on their health. These include most of their favorite foods like chocolates, pastries, cookies, chips, French fries, etc. The rich sugar, trans fats, and refined carbs content adversely affect the health of your child.
Also, encourage your child to play outdoor games and sports and also indulge in regular exercise as a part of the daily routine of your child. Playing outdoors helps your body absorb sunlight, which is vital for bone growth. Also, do regular check-ups with the pediatrician and enquire about your kid’s growth needs and if any supplements can help enhance growth.
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