We receive many emails at The Healthy Chef regarding the use of our protein powders for children. This is a good question as most of our customers enjoy our protein as a healthy breakfast smoothie or snack in the mornings or afternoon. The answer is simple... YES. My aim at The Healthy Chef is to design our products so that they can be enjoyed by the whole family. Our protein is no exception as it is pure, clean and all natural, providing the essential amino acids that the body needs for optimum health.
The Institute of Medicine recommends that both the quality and quantity of protein are important to meet the needs of kids during childhood. Protein-rich plant foods, such as beans, nuts, seeds, nut butters and brown rice, can contribute to total protein intake and can give a child more fibre. Animal-rich protein sources include organic eggs, cultured dairy (kefir, yoghurt) organic poultry, fish, and grass fed beef which can ensure that a child gets nutrients like choline, vitamin B12, calcium, zinc, iron and/or long-chain omega-3 fatty acids.
The answer is simple...YES our protein was designed for everyone...including kids and adults as it only contains simple wholefood ingredients that nourish the body and provide essential amino acids that body needs for good health.
Our protein is also wonderful for fussy eaters or those on restrictive diets including GAPS and SCD that is free from lactose and starch so it helps support healthy digestion and immunity.
Many protein powders out in the market are not suitable for children or contain a high amount of casein, milk solids, soy and gluten that can disrupt sensitive digestion.
Protein is essential for good health and is particularly important for the growth and development of children. This essential macronutrient is vital for brain development, organ function, muscle growth and repair, and a healthy immune system. Due to the demands of growth and development, obtaining adequate protein is particularly important throughout infancy, childhood and adolescence. That's why a child's protein needs are significantly higher per kilogram of body weight than for an adult.
The Institute of Medicine recommends that both quality and quantity of protein are important to meet the needs of kids during childhood.
Generally, kids can enjoy their protein from good quality sources of organic grass fed meats, organic poultry, wild caught fish, cultured yoghurt and kefir, Pure Native WPI protein and organic eggs. Vegetable sources of protein include lentils, dried peas and beans, nuts, seeds and their milks and butters as well as our plant based Organic Protein.
Why protein powder for kids?
If you’re busy and pressed for time to make protein packed meals, a protein smoothie using a clean, nutritious protein powder, such as Healthy Chef protein, can often come in handy.
At any time of day, you can quickly whip up a nutrient rich shake that’s loaded with protein, antioxidants and fibre to support your kid’s health and wellbeing.
Protein is vital for brain development, organ function, muscle repair and a healthy immune system, that is crucial for growth and development during childhood.
There are other reasons why protein powder can play an important part of your kid’s diet, especially if they fit one of the categories below:
They don’t want meat or other protein sources such as eggs or beans. If you’re faced with a fussy eater then they are most likely missing out on their recommended protein intake. Get your kids into the kitchen and let them create their own healthy tasty smoothie. If they make it – they will eat it. I love banana, rice milk, ice and a scoop of protein. You can boost calcium by adding a spoonful of tahini, and boost fibre and omega 3 by adding ground flaxseeds.
For kids who are vegetarian and don’t include enough tofu, cultured yoghurt, eggs, legumes, nuts and seeds in their diet, then having a protein smoothie or shake can help them reach your protein requirements. The Journal of Pediatrics and Child Health states that a well-balanced vegetarian diet can provide for the needs of children and adolescents. It's important to know that particular attention should be paid to adequate protein intake and sources of essential fatty acids, iron, zinc, calcium, and vitamins B12 and D for kids who are vegetarian.
Children who have a diet high in carbohydrates and not enough in protein, omega 3 and essential fatty acids, can often experience mood swings and poor concentration. In a study of 5000 students aged 9 - 11 by Cardiff University results demonstrated a positive link between students' breakfast quality and their educational attainment. Teacher assessment scores were up to twice as high for students who ate a good breakfast, compared with those who did not.
Enjoys sweet food and drinks
Energy drinks, flavoured milks and processed snack foods attribute to 30 per cent of calories eaten by kids. They often contain added fillers, flavours and a heap of sugar and lack the nutrition your child needs for proper growth and development. Overweight children run a greater risk of becoming overweight adults and are more likely to develop health-related problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.
Parents provide the environment in which eating behaviours are set. It makes me sad when I’m at the supermarket and see some parents shopping with their children, loading up the trolley with soft drinks, packets of chips and processed foods. The number of overweight children is increasing each year. 25 per cent (1.5 million) of Australian children are overweight or obese, according to the Australian National Children’s Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey. Globally, the number of overweight children under the age of five is estimated by the World Health Organisation to be over 42 million.
Overweight children run a greater risk of becoming overweight adults and are more likely to develop health-related problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.
The International Journal of Obesity reports that the family environment is the main influence on what our children eat, and studies show that when parents eat fruit and vegetables regularly, so do their kids. So feed your family the right kinds of foods and combine this with the regular daily exercise needed to build a strong healthy body. Making your kids a nutritious smoothie filled with wholefruits, leafy greens, protein and essential nutrients they need to thrive will ensure that they will grow into healthy adults.
For active kids, it’s important to feed them with a healthy protein drink such as a homemade protein rich smoothie to repair and recover. I love my superfood smoothie made with organic blueberries, banana and protein rich almond milk.
Protein powder: what to look for
You should be looking for a protein that is free from additives, gluten, artificial sweeteners and fillers that can actually cause digestive and bloating issues, contribute to weight gain and poor nutrient absorption. I detail the exact ingredients that you don’t want in your protein powder HERE.
What makes the Healthy Chef protein ideal for kids is that it is a unique GMO-free formula containing an exceptionally high amount of protein from either 100% biodynamic grass-fed dairy, which is our Healthy Chef WPI protein, or from organic golden peas, which is our Healthy Chef Pea protein.
You should be looking for a protein that is free from additives, gluten, artificial sweeteners and fillers as these ingredients can actually cause digestive and bloating issues, contribute to weight gain and poor nutrient absorption.
Our superior WPI quality protein is virtually lactose-free, with less than 0.1 g lactose per serve, making it suitable for people with digestive issues such as lactose sensitivity or anyone suffering from bloating. Both proteins are high in the amino acid leucine which helps with the regulation of blood-sugar levels, the growth and repair of muscle tissue (such as bones, skin and muscles), growth hormone production, wound healing as well as energy regulation.
Nutrient reference values for protein state that a child between 4 and 15 years of age need between 0.91g/ kg of body weight to 0.99g / kg of body weight and more if they are active or playing competitive sports. As long as you don’t exceed your kid’s safe protein intake, they will benefit from this nutritious supplement to help them grow and develop into healthy adults.