Food choices can directly impact stress levels in the body. Consuming refined or processed carbs like white flour, bread, pasta, pizza, white rice can directly increase the blood sugar in the body and ultimately impact stress levels. On the contrary, foods which are whole grains like amaranth, buckwheat, barley or other high fibre foods can control the spike in blood sugar and manage stress. Fibre rich foods are suitable to beat stress as they release a brain calming chemical called serotonin in the body.
In addition to fibre, research has found that intake of Magnesium can help manage stress and anxiety in kids. In our body, Magnesium is responsible for nerve transmission and nerve-muscle coordination. In other words, it protects against the excessive excitement in a child (which can be traumatic). There is enough research going on how Magnesium can help in fixing or preventing neurological disorders.
Traditionally, if we look back centuries ago, Sendha namak or Epsom salt has been used to heal, relax and calm the body nerves. Epsom salt is actually not a salt but a mineral called Magnesium sulfate. Soaking body or feet in this mineral enables absorption of decent quantity through skin which results in relaxing nerves and muscles.
Studies indicate that roughly 50% kids don’t meet the daily Magnesium requirement. Magnesium is one of the top four abundant minerals in the body. So, any deficiency of this mineral will easily reflect in daily life. Magnesium is key in formation of bones, maintaining blood flow and keeping stress low. It also brings relief to girls who suffer from menstrual cramps, leg cramps and irritable mood. For kids who deal with Asthma, which is on a rise due to hazardous air quality levels, magnesium can help. This Marvellous mineral has calming effects and hence aids in reducing hyper activity and lack of focus in kids. Daily intake of magnesium is necessary to maintain stock of the mineral in the body.
Spinach, beans, chia seed, sunflower seed, cumin, whole wheat flour, milk, yogurt, almond, peanut, cashew, quinoa are great sources of this mineral. Just 1 wholewheat roti/ paratha can meet 15% daily requirement of this mineral. In addition, 10 almonds or cashews will give 10% and 1 cup spinach will give 20%. However, a diet high in processed food can cause excretion of Magnesium through urine.
- Magnesium also helps to absorb Vitamin-D in our body, which in turn helps to absorb Calcium in our bones. Hence, lack of this powerful mineral will directly result in weaker bones, teeth, hair and nails. Weaker bones (lethargy) further adds to irritation and stress in kids.
- Migraine is one of the most common neuro disorders which too has shown improvement with the consumption of Magnesium.
- Anxiety and Depression have impacted hundreds of millions of people across the world. Dietary intake of magnesium has been offered as a possible treatment, in addition to therapy.
So Yes! Magnesium is vital for every kid. Next time when your child has some tired muscles or cramp, use the magnesium salt with water to dip their feet in and let that table salt be on the table only!
Recipe for Quinoa Peas Meal
- ½ cup quinoa boiled in equal water
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 small onion chopped
- ½ cup peas
- 1 pod garlic and ginger chopped
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- lemon juice fresh
- green chilli chopped (optional)
- Chopped handful coriander
Heat oil in pan. Add cumin ginger garlic and onion. Saute for a minute. Add peas. Add salt. Add chillies. Cook for 3 min. Add boiled quinoa (no water at all). Cook for 5 min. Add lots of lemon juice to taste spicy salty and sour. All flavours! Garnish with coriander. Serve!