Sugar plays an important role in the diet of children. Because it is a well – known source of carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates is a group of food substances, which emit simple carbohydrates and complex carbohydrates.
Simple carbohydrates (glucose, fructose, maltose, sucrose) is mainly sweet substances which we get from fruits, honey, sweets. Complex carbohydrates – mostly savoury substances coming to us with vegetables, cereals, bread. Once in the body, they are cleaved under the action of saliva in the mouth and stomach, and finally processed and absorbed in the small intestine. Not only assimilate so-called indigestible complex carbohydrates (dietary fiber). They contribute to normal bowel function, help the excretion of cholesterol, heavy metals and foreign substances that have the ability to cause cancer. Sources of dietary fiber in the diet of young children (under 3 years) are fruits, vegetables, cereals, and after 3 – 4 years they added to wholemeal bread (with bran). The final product of breakdown of carbohydrates is widely known to all glucose. In pure form it is found in fruits, and the sweeter the fruit, the more of it. Glucose is a universal source of energy and one of the appetite stimulants. While reducing its level in the blood appears your hunger.
There are three principal uses of glucose in the body:
- glucose is the energy for functioning of all organs.
- cocoon in the liver cells and muscles.
- is Converted into fat, when the amount of income is excessive.
Carbohydrates are needed by the child not only as energy suppliers, but also as sources of vitamins (vitamin C, beta–carotene, folic acid), some mineral salts (potassium, iron), dietary fiber (which have a preventive effect against constipation in children), organic acids that improve the digestive process. The more of these valuable nutrients per calorie, the higher the nutritional value of carbohydrate. The preschool child should receive per day 300 g vegetables and 150 g fruits. Sugar holds no nutritional value, while having a high caloric content. The share of carbohydrates in the diet of children largely depends on age. In children the first year of life, their content is 40%. And after a year increases to 60%, of which not more than 10% of sugar, including confectionery products.
At what age can a child have a sweet tooth
Sweet tooth a child at the genetic level. The first food in a baby’s life is breast milk, which imparts the sweetness of the milk sugar – lactose. When artificial feeding with formula milk the child receives lactose and maltose. The introduction of complementary foods expanding the range of sources of carbohydrates – fruit and vegetable juices, purees, porridge, which fully cover the needs of the child’s body in carbohydrates. As a rule, they do not contain table sugar – sucrose, and the desire of some parents to sweeten a particular dish to your liking, the child is more eaten, is totally unacceptable. Such behaviour of adults may lead to the perversion of taste sensations in a child, the abandonment of savoury dishes and as a consequence – overeating, excess weight. After a year children are allowed to enter the food in a small amount of table sugar and sweets. For children from 1 year to 3 years quantity of sugar per day is 40 g, from 3 to 6 years – 50 g. To begin acquaintance with sweets with various mousses, which are prepared on berry fruits (fresh and fresh frozen berries and fruits). Then you can eat marshmallows, marmalade, marshmallows, and various kinds of jam, jam, jam. The basis for marshmallow and pastille lies fruit purees, beaten with sugar and egg whites. For the first time gave the child a marshmallow, it is better to choose a vanilla or creamy, then you can offer marshmallows with fruit fillings. Marmalade is a jelly-like confectionary, obtained by boiling a mixture of fruit puree, sugar, molasses (by product of processing starch), pectin. It is better not to offer a child chewing varieties of candy, as they contain a lot of dyes, besides, he has a hard consistence, and the baby swallows it, almost not chewing. From the age of three (not before) you can offer grown-up little cakes and pastries that do not contain creams based on fat, and low-fat varieties of ice cream (not a sundae). The number of sweets is regulated: from 1 year to 3 years – 10 g per day, and from 3 to 6 years – 15, Their use should not be in the nature of encouragement to the child and, of course, give them after the main meal or for an afternoon snack. Until the age of four you can not give the children candy and lollipops, as there is a risk of choking. as for the chocolate and cocoa and marshmallow in the chocolate, candy, chocolate, etc., the child is under 3 years of age it is better not to deal with them. Chocolate contains a lot of fat and creates a burden for the enzymatic system of the stomach and pancreas of the child. Not recommended to use it with allergies and small children with altered pancreatic function. If there are no contraindications, then 3 years can give a little white and milk chocolate, and 5-6 years other kinds.
Honey in child’s diet
Separately say about honey. He not only has a high nutritional value (due to the easily digestible sugars – glucose and fructose, the calorie count reaches 335 kcal/100g), but also healing properties. Flower honey has a positive effect on the digestive system, improves secretory and motor activity of the stomach and other organs, stimulates the appetite and has a laxative effect on the gastrointestinal tract. In addition, honey has antimicrobial properties against a number of bacteria that cause a violation of the intestinal microflora, increases the body’s resistance to certain viruses, anti-inflammatory and expectorant effect in diseases of the respiratory tract. However, the use of honey in the diet of preschool children is limited by its high allergenicity. To 3 years the use of honey as a stand-alone product, it is impractical. He can enter into various baby food products of industrial production (cereal or cookies), but its amount is negligible there. After 3 years you can enter the honey in the diet of children, but occasionally, no more than 1 to 2 teaspoons, adding it in some dishes like a treat. If the child has allergies, use natural delicacy possible only after additional consultations with the doctor.
The effects of sugar on child health
Treating the child lots of sweets, remember that excessive consumption may cause a number of diseases. For example, decay – progressive destruction of the hard tissues of a tooth with formation of defect as a cavity. Scientists have proved that sucrose has a pronounced ability to cause the disease. Low frequency of caries in children is observed in the case where the level of consumption of sugar is about 30 g per day, which roughly corresponds to the physiological norm of consumption. Another problem is obesity caused by excessive food intake compared with the level of energy expenditure, the so-called alimentary obesity (from lat. alimentarius food). The child’s body weight 20% or more higher than the normal values for age. Such children having functional changes of the Central nervous system, endocrine glands, reduced immunity, increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. And there are psychological consequences of obesity, it often lowers a child’s self-esteem, leads to depression. All treats that include sugar must be elements of a celebration in the diet of the baby. The best “sweets” in his daily life is fruits and berries. Children, especially already having excess weight then you should choose the gifts of nature with high fructose and not glucose. It’s watermelons, apples, black currants, apricots, peaches, strawberries. The consumption of grapes (raisins) and bananas should be limited.
Food without sugar – the benefits and harms
The problem of obesity, diabetes has forced scientists to search for sweet substances, which could replace sugar and would be low calorie or no calorie. Such substances are divided into sugar substitute(fructose, xylitol, sorbitol) and intense sweeteners (saccharin, aspartame, cyclamate, Sucralose, Acesulfame).
Levulose – a natural fruit sugar. 1.7 times sweeter than regular sugar. The caloric content comparable to it, however due to the fact that fructose is sweeter, the amount of its use below. Besides, it is absorbed by cells without the hormone insulin, and is therefore used in healthy diet, including for diabetics. Sorbitol. In chemical structure relates to alcohols, is a restored form of glucose. Found in apples, pears, peaches. Can cause bloating and diarrhea, which prevents its wider use in the diet. Sorbitol finds use as a sweetener in chewing gum. Xylitol (E 967). In the form of carbohydrate xylose, is part of complex carbohydrates. Used as a sweetener in chewing gum. Intense sweeteners are substances insipidus nature. For sweets they are several hundred times higher than sugar. Have zero calories. This is especially beneficial when creating drinks. Another distinctive feature is that they are excreted in unchanged form. These compounds are not immediately accepted for use. Discussion revolved around the question of their Carcinogenicity (ability to cause cancer) , especially in high doses. The joint Committee FAO/who on food additives recommended safe daily dose, depending on the nature of the intense sweeteners: Aspartame is 40mg/kg of Saccharin is 5 mg/kg of Cyclamate 11 mg/kg Sucralose – 18 mg/kg of Acesulfame K 8 mg/kg.
As intense sweeteners, despite the recommended safe rate of their consumption, a child under 7 years is better to avoid products to which they belong. This is especially true of carbonated beverages. Naturally, neither parent teaches the child to sweets deliberately. Poor nutrition starts with attempts to solve the problem of poor appetite. Children, unlike adults, do not have the habit to eat regularly. Their appetite can vary greatly from day to day. This difference may be associated with physical activity. Pediatricians believe that there is no need to persuade or force a child to eat. Does not exist voluntarily starving children. But we should not succumb to the myth that the child himself instinctively chooses his food. Parents can (and should!) in early childhood form the love of a child to proper diet. The child should be accustomed to vegetables, fruits, soups and cereals. And, of course, impossible to go on about the child, offering him sweets and pastries, if he refuses to eat.