Proteins are required for kids, especially, when they are at the threshold of development. Protein powders may serve perfect partners for your kid’s high-profile, active lifestyle.
Proteins are extremely important for bodily growth and development. Proteins are essential in order to supplement high-profile lifestyles and hectic schedule; with heavily loaded haversacks for school, to chapters that demand much more than focus and concentration; and how could we forget the competitive streak that is present in every kid! Proteins, indeed, are the building blocks, serving to be the foundation of growth and development. Children, in the actual, do not require protein powders, as their daily supplements stem from the diet they ought to consume. The amount that they consume, through their daily nutrition diet, is enough to supplement their protein diet. Thus, protein powders are not a much-needed requirement for children. Nevertheless, before you begin to administer a protein powder to your child, it is mandatory that you consult a pediatrician for the content of protein and protein powder your child must consume.
What Is Protein Powder Made Of
Protein powder is a much coveted choice for men and women, as they are known for the muscle-building and fat-burning properties they possess. They should always be chosen over junk food that has fats and cholesterol to contribute. Protein powders constitute a myriad of sources, such as dairy products, soy, grains, and vegetables. The dairy products added to make these supplements contain whey, which can be easily digested, and casein, being slow on the digestive meters. Whey proteins that can easily be broken down are further divided into concentrates, isolates, and hydrolysates. Concentrates is a division that has the least processed proportion, with isolates being the highest in terms of containing proteins, and hydrolysates consumed for easy absorption of proteins. Casein content comes as calcium caseinate, potassium, or sodium casienate. Protein powders, in the actual, are designed to help athletes and bodybuilders gain body mass and a muscular stature; however, a protein powder meant for kids can only supplement the diet or fill the gap that has not been taken care of, by the protein included in the diet.
What You Ought to Know about Protein Powders
☛ Judging the Protein Powder Content for Kids
As responsible guardians or parents, one must affirm through thorough inquiry as to what is the amount of protein, or the content of protein that needs to be administered to your child. Dehydration, calcium loss, and kidney dysfunction are some of the side effects that can occur due to an overdose of protein powder. If your child is hyperactive and has a hectic schedule attending school and a martial arts session every day, the intake of protein for your child should be slightly higher than a child who does not endure a tough regimen. Even if your child is a fussy eater, a protein diet supplemented with chicken, turkey, crab, a bowl of cereals, and milk is suitable. If at all you feel that the daily diet your child is consuming is not enough; hence, it should be supplemented with something extra, it is always advisable to garner an expert’s consult before you introduce a nutritional supplement to your child.
☛ Recommended Protein Powder Dosage
An important factor that needs your attention: The amount of protein your child requires is decided by his weight and age. Undermentioned are important pointers that suggest the recommended protein intake.
► A child aged between 6 to 15 years does not require more than half a gram of protein per lb.
► The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that, on an average, children aged between 1 to 3 years require 13 grams of protein every day.
► They also state that children between the age range of 4 to 8 years and 9 to 13 years, are recommended to consume 19 grams and 34 grams of protein, respectively; they being accounted for per-day consumption.
Besides, as mentioned earlier, an overdose of protein is not advisable. However, if there is an excess of protein that has been administered, the kidney is responsible to get rid of the same. The remaining protein content is converted to, and stored as fat. It is due to the protein supplements consisting high levels of fat, carbohydrates, sugar, and artificial flavoring that the kids’ health experts abstain from prescribing parents to administer the same, and thereby stick to a wholesome, protein-rich diet for children. Tuna fish, cottage cheese, and milk are some of the foods that have a rich source of protein. Parents should make sure they add an adequate amount of protein to their child’s daily diet.
Tips to Be Borne in Mind
- Protein supplements that you may get your kid to consume may not be allergy free. Thus, you need to be careful, especially if your child is allergic to certain ingredients.
- Introduce protein powders in smaller quantities at first; more so if your child acts scavenger on the dinner table.
- Besides, don’t judge the efficacy of the protein powder as you register the price stickled over the crimp. The ‘see bottom for price’ tag may well deceive a few guardians on the lookout for a healthy drink, deriving virtually nothing in the bargain. Therefore, read the labels before you decide to lay trust and exchange against a few crisp notes.
- A flip side: Reading the label thoroughly, certainly is a plus; however, there have been instances, where the labels propose a higher quantity of protein powder to be consumed than is required by the body. Hence, the need to consult a practitioner arises.
Mentioned herein, are some protein supplements deemed helpful for children if consumed in the right, rather recommended quantity.
► Whey protein is termed one complete protein, obtained from cow’s milk. Whey protein isolate (WPI) is considered pure protein; however, certain whey protein supplements may contain ingredients, such as creatine, deemed essential for bodybuilding. For children, choose a supplement that is pure whey protein without sweeteners or additives. This feature makes it safe for consumption. Whey is available in several flavors which makes it less vulnerable to garnering volatile throes from kids. Besides, whey does not contain an inherent flavor, thus making it a reticent inclusion to soups, gravies, smoothies, and cereal portions. Bottom line: Whey is safe for children; however, due to the variational composition of ingredients, an expert’s advice becomes mandatory.
► Hemp protein, too, is an important plant-based protein that helps pack on energy. It contains essential amino acids, like arginine, cysteine, and tyrosine — a requirement in prescribed quantities for children. Conceal it in cookies, bake it with cereals, or add to breads — hemp protein powder works well. Besides, it is gluten free, thereby not disturbing the abdominal lining and causing no allergic reactions.
► A bowl of cereal stirred in milk or simply blending it in a glass of milkshake to make a protein shake is an option that could serve to be the perfect host and carrier of protein. This substitute protein powder can be easily digestible and thus, ceases to pose any problems related to the stomach. It helps your child to function well, by providing him with the required levels of energy.
► Powdered milk — one that is low on fat content — is a wholesome source of protein, as it contains all the essential amino acids. A scoop or two in a glass of milk or added to cereal would make for a nutritional supplement.
► Protein powders, containing soy, serve to be a wise choice for children who are lactose-intolerant. Soy is considered an essential protein, low on contributing fat and calories.
Potential Side Effects of Protein Overdose
Whether choosing a protein powder for fussy eaters, or for supplementing the diet of an athlete kid, ensure that you discuss the pros and cons of the same with your trusted practitioner.
- If the label acknowledges lactose content, ensure that your child is tolerant toward the same. However, if your child is not, gastrointestinal troubles, such as an upset stomach, diarrhea and nausea may be a complaint.
- Taking in too much protein, i.e., more than the amount recommended, may lead to kidney stones, and bone-related issues, like osteoporosis in the later years of life.
- Another potential risk of consuming protein powder in excess could be unnecessary weight gain. Administer protein powder, if it absolutely, is essential for your child.
However, to repeat and support the statement I have made throughout, it is suggested that protein powders should be administered to kids, only when the need arises, of course, with the practitioner in the loop.
An Alternative to Protein Powders
Parents are concerned about their child’s welfare ad nauseam. They want their child to have the finest provisions possible; however, in the meantime we inadvertently tend to miss out on the basics. Walking the tight rope between what your child likes to eat and what you want your child to eat, by no means, is a pleasant proposition to handle. This is one modular set-up witnessed in almost every other household. Why? Well, the answer for this lies with you, rather, within you.
► To start with, look into your plate. Do YOU eat healthy? If you practice wholesome eating habits, you, sure, are in the position to preach them to your kid. However, if you have been picking at your plate, better not expect your child to stay put in his seat and not crab about the meal on menu today. Remember: Kids will do what they see you do.
► It’s your intrinsic model, in this regard, that should be flawless and garner no flack. Believe in impressing and not imposing. You would condition your child to eat right by making him feel responsible for what he is eating. Imposing is a short-term arrangement, impressing, a long-term agreement.
► Taking up from the point just mentioned, parents, more often than not, take to bribing the child. A classic example is asking the child to finish what’s in the plate in exchange for a chocolate-bar. Not good. This is where nutritional disabilities come into picture. Your child may know ‘what’ he is eating, but the ‘why’ is left far behind.
► Make an effort to introduce to your child a variety of foods at the formative stages itself. Don’t wait thinking this is not the right time. This, de facto, is the time to nip the problem in the bud, before it goes out of hand.
► When introducing a new type of food, assign an interesting name to it. For instance, if cabbage in white sauce it is, call it cab curry or cooked cab on the cob! Never mind if it is silly, the condition is, it should rouse interest in your child to try a little of it.
► Giving in to your child’s likes and dislikes is not the way to go. Common fact. We know we shouldn’t do it, but we can’t help not doing it. The essential proteins, amino acids, fiber, calcium, magnesium, and carbohydrates are lost out, only because the child does not like the dish prepared and has another one working up his mind. This may seem a hard step, but all is fair when you want your child to eat health-rich foods.
To sum up, it is these faulty eating practices that lead to lack of essential proteins and vitamins, which probes you to look for external supplements, like protein shakes. Protein shakes, as mentioned earlier on, are not a must; natural foods, sure, are. Guiding your child to eat healthy and right, will reduce the probability of them having to consume protein powders.
Disclaimer: The article published herein, is meant to accomplish pedagogical purposes only. The recommendations mentioned hereby, may not be generically applicable. The information, by no means, intends to supplant the diagnosis and advice imparted by the medical practitioner.