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Diet tips: Improve your child's digestive health with more fibre and antibiotics

Digestive health is crucial for children as it directly impacts their overall growth, development, and well-being. A well-functioning digestive system ensures efficient absorption of essential nutrients, which are vital for a child’s physical and cognitive development. Proper digestion helps maintain a strong immune system, reducing the risk of infections and illnesses.

Establishing healthy eating habits early in life, including a diet rich in fibre, fruits, vegetables, and probiotics, can promote optimal digestive function and set the foundation for lifelong health. By prioritising digestive health, parents can help their children thrive and achieve their full potential both physically and mentally.

Here are several tips to enhance digestive health in children suggested by Dr Deepak Goyal, additional director, pediatric gastroenterology & hepatology, Fortis Memorial Research Institute, Gurugram.

Dietary tips

Food is power: A balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats is like a superhero squad for their gut. It provides a variety of nutrients for the good bacteria to thrive.

Fibre intake: Fibre-rich fruits, vegetables, and whole grains act like prebiotics, giving the good bacteria a boost to fight off bad guys.

Hydration: Water is essential for smooth digestion. Encourage your child to sip water throughout the day to keep their gut happy.

Probiotic and prebiotics: Curd, buttermilk, kimchi, and yogurt are packed with probiotics, the good bacteria themselves! Include them to strengthen the superhero team.

Lifestyle tips

Move it or lose it: Regular exercise is like a training session for the gut. It keeps things moving smoothly and prevents constipation.

Mindful munching: Teach your child to eat slowly and chew their food thoroughly. This helps digestion and lets the gut superheroes do their job effectively.

Portion patrol: Encourage healthy portion control to avoid overeating, which can lead to a villainous bellyache.

Stress busters: Help your child manage stress through relaxation techniques, play, and open communication. A balanced routine with adequate rest fuels their gut health.

Sweet dreams for the gut team: Aim for 7-8 hours of quality sleep each night. Sleep gives the gut a chance to recharge, and the superheroes can fight another day.

Building good habits

Regularity is key: Encourage your child to go to the bathroom whenever they need to and not hold it in. This keeps things running smoothly.

Upright and alert: Discourage lying down right after eating. It can lead to indigestion, giving the villainous heartburn a chance to attack.

Food detectives: Pay attention to any food intolerances or allergies that might cause digestive troubles. If you suspect any, consult a Dr.

Wiser use of antibiotics: Antibiotics can be helpful when needed, but they can also weaken the good bacteria. Use them only when a Dr prescribes them.

Calling experts

If your child has persistent digestive issues, don't hesitate to consult a pediatric gastroenterologist. They can provide personalised advice and help your child's gut superheroes stay on top of their game.

By following these simple tips, you can help your child develop a strong, healthy gut, empowering them to live a happy and healthy life!

Source: moneycontrol

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