The foods that help to build bright kids 1260x542

The foods that help to build bright kids

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A large UK study has discovered a link between diet and IQ in children, reports Rosie Brogan.

UK scientists have unearthed evidence suggesting the dietary patterns that may best boost kids’ IQ.

University of Bristol researchers conducted a large population-based cohort study that tracked the diets of almost children at the age of 3, 4, 7 and 8.5 years. The children’s IQs were measured.

The study found that children fed diets high in processed foods (convenience foods (high in fat and sugar) at age 3 showed slightly lower IQ scores at age 8.5. For children who were 8 years old, slightly higher IQ was associated with diets rich in salads, fruit, vegies, fish, pasta and rice.

“It is likely that infant diet, beyond the type of milk consumed, plays an important part in cognitive development,” the researchers wrote.

Top-IQ foods

Parents should seek to build their children’s brainpower by encouraging them to eat ‘live foods’, says Australian Nutrition Educator Helen Frost.

“Live foods are fresh foods like raw fruits and vegetables, legumes and beans; whole grains like brown rice and rolled oats, wholemeal and grain bread and pasta; nuts and seeds, fresh eggs, lean meat, chicken, fish, dairy products and other unprocessed animal products. [Plus] oils like olive oil, avocado, coconut oil and clean water.”

To keep young brains calm and promote learning and concentration, essential fats and oils are particularly healthful, she says.

“Use avocado as a great spread on bread, toast and wholemeal crackers.” And reap the benefit of nuts (unless your child has a family history of nut allergies). Grind and blend these into other foods when feeding kids less than 5 years old.

References available on request