At Easter, it’s traditional to forego red meat on Good Friday and opt for fish such as salmon instead. While some members of your family may love salmon, for others (especially young children) it can be a hard sell! But with a host of nutrients such as omega-3, group B vitamins, protein, potassium, selenium and many more, consuming salmon regularly can provide a multitude of benefits – especially for children.
Here are seven great reasons why you should be incorporating more salmon into your child’s diet this Easter long weekend.
- It can fuel their growth. Salmon is a rich source of protein which is essential for contributing to the growth and maintenance of muscle mass Protein contributes to their ability to repair and build muscles, make new blood cells, and provide the energy they need to make it through the day. Growing kids, especially, need to get enough protein to aid physical growth, produce healthy joints and bones, and give them adequate energy for focus and concentration.
- It can support brain development. Salmon is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids Not only are these essential fats crucial for brain development, but they naturally help to keep the body’s immune system in balance. There is also some evidence to show that these fats can play a role in cognitive development and functioning, which is important for busy, active and developing kids1.
- It can support energy production. Salmon is a rich source of B-group Not only do B group vitamins play a key role in energy production, especially for those who need plenty of energy like kids but specifically Vitamin B12 that are involved in mood regulation, memory and concentration helping to keep our kids happy, healthy and their minds working as quickly as they do.
- It can be good for eye health. Given how hard-working our eyes are, it’s incredibly important to protect and provide our children with the proper nutrients for this vital organ through their food choices. Salmon can be beneficial for our child’s vision, as it contains high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, and niacin which play various critical roles in their eye health.
- It can support bone health. Salmon is rich in vitamin D and magnesium, both of which are essential for bone growth Magnesium is particularly important for kids because the best time to influence bone mass is in the early years, before peak bone mass is achieved during their adolescence.
- It can be great for heart health. Salmon is also packed with heart-healthy nutrients that may help lower triglycerides, reduce blood pressure, and lower the risk of cardiovascular Plus, salmon is a great source of potassium, an important mineral for balancing blood pressure and benefiting your child’s heart health.
- It can help them get a better night’s sleep. And if there weren’t already enough health benefits of eating more salmon, salmon is also a good source of vitamin B6 and protein, which can promote the production of sleep hormones that help our little ones stay full and rested throughout the night, leading to a better night’s sleep.
- Emery, S., Häberling, I., Berger, G., Walitza, S., Schmeck, K., Albert, T., Baumgartner, N., Strumberger, M., Albermann, M., Drechsler, R. Omega-3 and its domain-specific effects on cognitive test performance in youths: A meta-analysis, Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, Volume 112, 2020, Pages 420-436.
- Johnson S. The multifaceted and widespread pathology of magnesium deficiency. Med Hypotheses. 2001 Feb;56(2):163-70. doi: 10.1054/mehy.2000.1133. PMID: