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Alli Walsh, Social Media Strategist
As parents and caregivers, we want to help our kids do their very best. We want to spark new ideas, inspire creative adventures and ignite their intellectual curiosities. But they won’t get far without the right fuel for their brains and bodies.
In this first of two posts about diet and productivity, we explore a little bit of the science behind eating right—and why it’s so important for growing kids—and how you can help your children make healthy food choices that impact their school success.
Thanks to a growing popular interest in family wellness and rising mainstream awareness of issues like child obesity, the topic of children’s nutrition is always in the news. Parents, schools and community organizations are always seeking new insights into “what’s best for kids” and implementing new strategies to ensure students have a healthy, productive school day and go on to develop healthy lifelong eating habits.
With this in mind, let’s take a look at a range of research findings to get a feel for the link between productivity and diet:
In Harvard Business Review, Ron Friedman, Ph.D. explains how everything we eat is converted by our body into glucose, which provides the energy our brains need to stay alert. As soon as glucose levels start to dip, we start losing attention. It’s our signal to eat something and bring our energy levels back up. 4
But when it comes to fueling the body for optimal energy and performance, there’s a big difference between a piece of pizza and a whole-wheat turkey wrap. That’s because our bodies process foods at different rates, largely dependent on the glycemic load of the food:
School-age children (ages 6 to 12) need healthy foods and nutritious snacks, and they usually eat four to five times a day.6 It’s important for adults to:
Get ready for back-to-school! Don’t miss 4 Ways to Supercharge Back to School Safety and learn how to Perfect Your Kiddo’s Pearly Whites.
1 Anderson, M. L., Gallagher, J., & Ritchie, E. R. (2017, May 03). How the quality of school lunch affects students’ academic performance. Retrieved August 02, 2017, from https://www.brookings.edu/blog/brown-center-chalkboard/2017/05/03/how-the-quality-of-school-lunch-affects-students-academic-performance/.
3 Conner, T. S., Brookie, K. L., Richardson, A. C., & Polak, M. A. (2015, May). On carrots and curiosity: eating fruit and vegetables is associated with greater flourishing in daily life. Retrieved August 02, 2017, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25080035.
4 Friedman, R. (2015, December 30). What You Eat Affects Your Productivity. Retrieved August 02, 2017, from https://hbr.org/2014/10/what-you-eat-affects-your-productivity.
5 (n.d.). Retrieved August 02, 2017, from http://www.gisymbol.com/about/glycemic-index/.
6 Default - Stanford Children's Health. (n.d.). Retrieved August 02, 2017, from http://www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=school-aged-child-nutrition--90-P02280.
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Combined Insurance Company of America (Chicago, IL Illinois) is a leading provider of individual supplemental accident, disability, health, and life insurance products and a Chubb company. With a tradition of nearly 100 years of success, we have an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau and are one of Ward’s Top 50® Performing Life-Health Insurance Companies. Combined Insurance is also the number one Military Friendly® Employer in the over $1B revenue category for 2019 by VIQTORY. This is the company’s eighth consecutive year on the top 10 list and fifth consecutive year in the top 5—Combined Insurance was previously named the number one Military Friendly® Employer in the nation for 2015 and 2016. In New York, products are underwritten by Combined Life Insurance Company of New York (Latham, NY).
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