Our bodies are made of the nutrients found in food, thus what we choose to eat has a major impact on how we grow. Children grow at rapid rates, so their nutrient needs are much greater than adults. Pears provide ample vitamin C, fiber, and are cholesterol and fat-free, and more fruits and vegetables in the diet are necessary to help kids grow big and strong! Vitamin C helps your child build strong muscles, blood vessels, bones, and teeth. Fiber helps keep your child regular and prevent blood sugar spikes! Pears are also an excellent source of nutrients for one of baby’s first complementary foods!
Unfortunately, several diseases have been shown to start early in life, and including more fruit in the diet may help fight these illnesses. Most of us think of heart disease as an adult’s illness, but studies show that heart disease begins to develop in adolescence! Eating fruit and vegetables like pears can help fight the onset when included in an overall healthy diet. Pears contain antioxidants and are a good source of the antioxidant vitamin, vitamin C, which protect against oxidative stress that may lead to heart disease. Pears are also an excellent source of fiber, which has been shown to reduce cholesterol and reduce risk for heart disease.
Likewise, risk factors for heart disease, overweight and obesity, are becoming very common in our young population. Weight gain in children is due, in part, to over-consumption of processed foods and increased inactivity. Nutrient-dense pears are an excellent choice when it comes to weight management. Pears provide fiber and water, which help fill up small tummies. Pears are also portion-controlled and portable, for a healthy snack on the road or at school. Indeed, increasing fruit and vegetable intake might be the best way to battle the bulge! So help your kids stay healthy by including more pears in their diets! And be a good role model – eat pears and your children watching you will eat pears, too!
Pears have other benefits for kids, too! Dietary fiber reduces constipation, which is a struggle for many children. As well, fiber reduces the rate of sugar absorption, which will limit blood sugar spikes. When kids consume sugary snacks or processed food, blood sugars spike quickly then drop quickly. This sends kids running to the kitchen for another treat, usually something sugary. By including pears, a high fiber food, the dietary fiber limits the rate of sugar absorption. So, kids may stay satisfied longer, learn to control their appetites themselves, and learn to make healthy choices.
Ultimately, including more fruits and vegetables in the diet helps kids develop their own taste personalities and lifelong healthful eating habits. Studies suggest that kids who eat more fruits and vegetables eat more fruits and vegetables as adults, too. So if we really are what we eat, then shouldn’t we eat healthy foods throughout life to be healthy people? Of course! So, include pears and other fruits and vegetables at every meal!