Childcare

Childcare

Kids should not be exposed to CT scans as it can cause cancer

According to a recent research conducted by scientist at University of Melbourne, exposure to radiation in children can significantly increase the chances of cancers. Researchers examined the Medicare data and the electronic medical records of millions of Australian aged up to 18 years. The study found that more than 3000 children who were exposed to CT scans had developed cancers which is 24% higher compared to those who were not.

New study states that appropriate vitamin D intake in pregnancy could prevent the chances of developing Autism

According to a new research conducted at University of Queensland, Australia, vitamin D intake in mice was able to prevent the occurrence of autism in offspring. The research will now allow scientist to further investigate ideal doses and timing for pregnant women. The best source of vitamin D is natural sunlight, vegetables and fruits.

Sleep apnea can affect development of brain in children

According to a study conducted at University of Chicago, involving 16 children having such disorder and 9 normal children, discovered that kids with the disease had substantial reductions in grey matter. Grey matter is the information processor of the brain. Sleep apnea is found in over 5% of all children across the world. The study sample size was small and the results needs confirmation on large size trials.

Excessive use of lipoproteins, fatty acids might cause chronic kidney stones in children

According to a study recently published in Pediatric Nephrology shows that high intake of lipoproteins and fatty acids cause painful chronic kidney stones in children. The study was conducted at Children’s hospital of Michigan Urology Dept in USA. As per the latest US data, growing number of kidney stone patients are children, teenagers, and infants. The study included 16 kids with kidney stones and 14 children free from stones.

Child in Scotland has the worst health in Europe

A recent State of Health – Scotland report found that over 2 lakh kids live in poverty and 28% are obese and around 400 die in a year. Another report compiled by Royal college of Paediatrics showed that 30% women are smokers in deprived areas. The report says Scotland leads the way with high vaccination rate and health of younger people however situation is not good with the kids. The reports recommend extending the smoking ban and regularly checking child health.

Dutch children are the most happiest in the world – Why?

According to a UNICEF report released in 2013, Dutch kids are the happiest person in the world. The secret behind is the approach of parents which is radically different from American parents. The findings were based on five parameters: material wellbeing, health, safety, education, behaviors and risks, housing and environment. Netherlands was the leading country followed by four Scandinavian countries.

Boys three times as likely as girls to get educational toys for Christmas

The study discovered that 31 per cent of science, technology, engineering and maths gifts were listed as for lads. The study discovered that 31 per cent of science, technology, engineering and maths gifts were listed as for lads by online retailers, compared with 11 per cent of them for girls. Top in a boys’ toys web search was the Playmobil City Action Space Rocket and Base Station at £44.99. No1 girls’ toy came out as Disney Princess My First Magic Hair Glow Rapunzel at £18.50.  The doll wears pink. More at: https://www.thesun.co.uk

Iran theme park teaches kids to fight U.S., Israel

Going with the maxim that idle hands are the work of Satan, Iran has opened a new theme park where kids can play at fighting the U.S. and Israel. The City of Games for Revolutionary Children is the new smash attraction for kids as young as eight who want in on jihadist fun. They’re provided with military uniforms and guns and fight battles against Iran’s enemies. More at: http://www.ottawasun.com/

Half a million children live under siege in Syria

As violence continues to escalate across Syria, the number of children living under siege has doubled in less than one year. Nearly 500,000 children now live in 16 besieged areas across the country, almost completely cut off from sustained humanitarian aid and basic services. “For millions of human beings in Syria, life has become an endless nightmare – in particular for the hundreds of thousands of children living under siege. Children are being killed and injured, too afraid to go to school or even play, surviving with little food and hardly any medicine,” said Anthony Lake, UNICEF Executive Director. “This is no way to live – and too many are dying.” More at: https://www.unicef.org

Youtube Kids launched in India

There is good news for the Indian digital generation as well as the internet-surfing parents of young children. YouTube is not only the world’s most popular online video community that enables millions of people to discover, watch and share original videos, but India is also among YouTube’s top 10 nations with maximum users. YouTube, LLC, is based in San Bruno, California, and is a subsidiary of Google Inc. Sixty per cent of YouTube’s traffic in India is generated through cellphone usage and hundreds of hours are invested in offline viewing. Keeping this in mind, YouTube Kids has been launched in India. It is an app built with parents and children in order to help them find videos on topics they want to explore. Reportedly, since YouTube Kids launched in over 20 countries, it has been downloaded tens of millions of times by families. At the same time, it is also available for free on Google Play and Apple’s App Store in India. More at: http://www.dailypioneer.com/

The 5 best tablets for kids in 2016

If you’re sick of constantly finding your tablet battery drained because your child has been using it with their favorite tech toy, or to binge on cartoons on Netflix, it might be time they got their own. But which one to choose? Here we look at some of the best tablets for children which are available in 2016. Before jumping in with our pick of the best tablets for kids, it’s worth thinking about some of the factors you’ll want to consider when selecting the right one. For example, if a tablet is likely to take a regular beating in the hands of your child, you’ll need to look for one with built-in protection, or at least a protective case. More at: http://newatlas.com/

British children among the least active in the world, with exercise ‘stripped out’ of modern lives

British children are among the least active in the world, and fitness levels are plummeting, a damning international study has found. Experts said the results were alarming, showing that movement was being “stripped out” of modern lifestyles, with children weaned on screen-time and starved of outdoor activity. On Sunday night Simon Stevens, head of the NHS, called for radical changes in family routines, describing exercise as a “magic pill” which would be a “pharmaceutical blockbuster” if only it could be bottled. More at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

Scotland’s children among least active in the world despite ‘very best’ environment for playing outdoors

SCOTLAND’S children are some of the least active in the world, despite having one of the best environments for playing outdoors, international research has suggested. A study of 38 nations ranked the country joint-last for physical activity and time spent in front of screens. Scotland was ranked joint-second for national policy on physical activity and joint-fourth for a safe and accessible environment. Obesity levels in Scotland are projected to reach 40 per cent by 2030, with poor diet, lack of exercise and sedentary lifestyles identified as key factors. More at: http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/

Robots being developed that have a ‘brain’ and can learn new things like a human child

The groundbreaking machine is currently under development from Italian researchers who hope to mimic the human learning experience. The hopes of the scientists are that the robot will develop and learn from nothing – much like a new-born child would. The project is being led by Goal Robots in Italy, who hope to have the first learnable robot within four years. Gianluca Baldassarre, from the Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies of the National Research Council (CNR-Istc), who is co-ordinating the project, said: “The goal is to make robots that are able to learn independently, experimenting and making experiences exactly like young children, between one and two years old, and then apply their new acquired skills.” More at: http://www.express.co.uk/

Google launches YouTube Kids in India, a library of learning oriented video content

Making it easier for today’s tech savvy kids to find videos on topics they want to explore, popular online video community YouTube on Wednesday launched “YouTube Kids” — a huge library of learning content for children — in India. “YouTube Kids comes to India at a great time for millions of Indian families, as it provides children access to content that will enrich thier lives and create new opportunities for learning,” Malik Ducard, YouTube’s Global Head of Family and Learning, said in a statement. “India already has a very diverse and rapidly-growing creator base for kids and learning, with content in this category growing 100 per cent year over year,” Ducard added. The standalone, kid-friendly and mobile-first app is available on Google Play and App Store from Wednesday. With its playful design, large images and bold icons, YouTube Kids makes it easier for the children to find and navigate through videos like “Little Krishna” or one of the popular videos from “ChuChuTV”. More at: http://tech.firstpost.com/

Spending more time outside could lower risk of nearsightedness in children, Waterloo study finds

Children who spend just one extra hour a week outside lower their risk of developing nearsightedness by 15 per cent, a new study from the University of Waterloo has found. “There’s a school of thought that people are spending more time up close, they’re using more time on the screen, there’s probably more studying than before,” lead investigator Mike Yang told CBC KW’s The Morning Edition host Craig Norris.”Some of the new research has shifted away from the close work by saying doing close work is taking time away from outdoor time, and it’s really the decreased outdoor time that’s causing things to shift to a younger age.” More at: http://www.cbc.ca/

Aussie study finds children with vitamin D deficiency more likely to develop asthma, allergies

In a world’s first study, Australian researchers have found that children with vitamin D deficiency were more likely to develop asthma and other allergies later on in life. Researchers from Western Australia’s Telethon Kids Institute tracked vitamin D levels from birth to age 10 in Perth and found that children were at high risk of developing asthma and allergies as they grew older if they lacked the nutrient at a young age. The findings also showed that repeated bouts of vitamin D deficiency in early childhood were linked to higher rates of asthma at age 10, as well as allergy and eczema. The study’s lead author Dr Elysia Hollams said the findings showed that vitamin D plays an important role in regulating the immune system as well as promoting a healthy lung development. More at: http://news.xinhuanet.com/

Sleep-Deprived Kids Consume More Calories: Study

Young children who miss daytime nap and also stay up late at night are likely to consume more calories than usual, increasing their risk of obesity, a new study has warned. In the study, preschoolers, all regular afternoon nappers, were deprived of roughly three hours of sleep on one day – they had no afternoon nap and were kept up for about two hours past their normal bedtime – before being awakened at their regularly scheduled times the next morning. During the day of lost sleep, the 3- and 4-year-olds consumed about 20 per cent more calories than usual, 25 percent more sugar and 26 per cent more carbohydrates, said study lead author Monique LeBourgeois from University of Colorado at Boulder in the US. The following day, the kids were allowed to sleep as much as they needed. On this “recovery day,” they returned to normal baseline levels of sugar and carbohydrate consumption, but still consumed 14 per cent more calories and 23 per cent more fat than normal. More at: http://www.ndtv.com/

Study: Poor kids do better in happy schools

Schools serving poor students no less likely to have negative climate than schools serving wealthier one. Happy schools are good schools, especially for poor children. That’s the headline finding from a study published Tuesday in the Review of Educational Research. Analyzing dozens of earlier studies in a meta-analysis, it finds that the negative effects of poverty are partially offset in schools with a positive school climate. It is an intuitive and encouraging finding, if only because happiness doesn’t cost a thing. It validates a path forward for school districts like Rochester, where poverty is a pressing concern. More at: http://www.democratandchronicle.com/

Children at greater risk of unhealthy weight gain during summer holidays, study shows

Children are at greater risk of gaining unhealthy amounts of weight during summer vacation than during the school year, according to a new study published in the Obesity journal. Researchers studied more than 18,000 kindergartners over two years and found that obesity increased only during the two summer vacations, and not at all during the school years. The results are being unveiled at the Obesity journal symposium at Obesity Week, the annual conference of The Obesity Society (TOS). More at: http://www.news-medical.net/

Letting Children Always Win Is a Losing Strategy

Letting children always win games and competitions may give them a false sense of self-confidence that could interfere with learning, suggests a study in the Journal of Experimental Child Psychology. Children who were consistently successful at finding a hidden object in a game deliberately rigged in their favor were less likely to acknowledge the help that an adult had provided than children who found the object some of the time, the study found. Children who only experienced success may have assumed they had special skills and didn’t require help from others, the researchers suggest. More at: http://www.wsj.com/

Using smartphones before bedtime can be dangerous to a child’s health: Study

Parents, take note! Kids who use smartphones or tablets at bedtime may be at over twice the risk of having inadequate sleep, which may lead to various health issues such as obesity and poor diet, a new study has found. Researchers from Cardiff University in the UK, comprised a systematic review of 20 existing observational studies, involving 1,25,198 children, also found that sleep quality and day-time sleepiness were affected to a similar magnitude. More at: http://www.bgr.in/

Mothers’ Nutrition Pivotal for Healthy Child Growth, Study

Improving mothers’ nutrition before and during pregnancy is pivotal to reducing child stunting in developing countries, researchers said on Tuesday, as a new study showed poor child growth often starts in the womb. Defined as low height-for-age, stunting affects one in three children in the developing world and carries severe, irreversible consequences for both physical health and cognitive function. An analysis of data from 137 developing nations by a team of Harvard scientists found the leading cause of stunting is fetal growth restriction (FGR) – poor fetal growth in the womb resulting in a baby being abnormally small at birth. More at: http://food.ndtv.com/

Nickelodeon Is Terrible for Your Kid’s Health, Says New Study

TV time is most mom’s guilty pleasure — not the hours you spend watching The Bachelor (though that is 100 percent legit!), but the hours you let your kids sit in front of the tube. Every parent know there’s nothing that quiets kids like a solid hour of quality programming, and you can always count on Nickelodeon for solid entertainment (looking at you, Sponge Bob). But that old adage about TV rotting kids’ brains might be truer than you thought, reports a new study done by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). Over the past decade, Nickelodeon has shown a modest decline in the number of ads for junk foods, candy, and restaurants — which is good news, because that makes for healthier kids away from the screen, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (APA). But more than 30 percent of all fast food ads aimed at kids air on their channel, a previous study done by the Healthy Eating Research Foundation found. Yes, the channel of perennial kid favorites like Kuu Kuu Harajuku and Power Rangers is also the channel of junk food. More at: http://www.redbookmag.com/

E-cigarette poisonings in kids skyrocket, study finds

The number of children under 6 poisoned by nicotine in e-cigarettes rose by nearly 1,500% between 2013 and 2015, and one child died, according to an analysis of calls to the National Poison Data System published in the journal Pediatrics. More than 90% of the children swallowed the nicotine-laced liquid, known as e-juice, that is smoked inside e-cigarettes. Nearly half of the exposed children were under the age of 2. The number of children exposed to e-cigarette products each month rose from 14 in January 2012 to 223 in April 2015. More at: http://edition.cnn.com/

Researchers think they know how to make your brain learn like a kid again

Kids have amazing brains. They can pick up two languages in early childhood just as easily as they can learn one. Early childhood also seems to be the key time period when musical training makes it much easier to acquire the skill known as perfect or absolute pitch. And that’s not all – kids and teens are able to learn certain skills and abilities much more quickly than most adults. In a way, it makes sense that the young brain is so ‘plastic’, or able to be moulded. When we’re young and learning how to navigate the world, and we need to be able to acquire skills and knowledge fast. More at: http://www.sciencealert.com/

Obese mothers risk shortening lives of children by up to 17 years, study suggests

Obese and overweight mothers risk shortening the lives of their children by up to 17 years a new study suggests. Scientists in Belgium discovered a strong link between Body Mass Index (BMI) and the length of telomeres in research involving women and their babies. Telomeres are the protective caps at the end chromosomes which shield DNA in a similar way to the plastic aglets at the end of shoe-laces, preventing unravelling. The length of telomeres is a good indication of biological age so scientists were keen to find out if length differed in babies whose mothers were overweight or obese. They discovered that for each increase in BMI point above a normal level, telomeres were around 50 base pairs shorter, the equivalent of being 1.1 to 1.6 years older. More at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

‘Change in study pattern can improve kid’s performance’

A Malaysia-based company has claimed to make schoolchildren intellectuals by changing their study pattern. Addressing a seminar, Kelvin Tham, founder of SIP Academy from Malaysia, claimed that with the Brain Gym exercise, abacus and mental arithmetic techniques, children had shown improvement in many aspects such as memory, creativity, self-confidence, calculation, besides overall academic and non-academic performance. Brain Gym exercise refer to movements naturally done to coordinate eyes, ears, hands, and the whole body. “These movements work so well and often bring about dramatic improvements in areas such as concentration and focus, memory, reading, writing, math, physical coordination, relationships, self-responsibility, organization skills and attitude,” claimed Tham. More at: http://www.tribuneindia.com/

Teething tablets may be linked to 10 children’s deaths, FDA says

Ten deaths of children who used homeopathic teething tablets and 400 adverse events associated with the tablets have been reported to the US Food and Drug Administration. The FDA warned caregivers to stop using the products, which parents use to soothe teething babies, and to take their child to a doctor immediately if the child experiences problems. The agency is investigating the adverse events and the cases involving the deaths, as “the relationship of these deaths to the homeopathic teething products has not yet been determined and is currently under review,” according to a statement. The deaths and adverse events — including fever, lethargy, vomiting, sleepiness, tremors, shortness of breath, irritability and agitation — occurred over the past six years. More at: http://edition.cnn.com/

Three-year-old boy dies after eating poisonous mushroom in Victoria

A three-year-old boy who had been picking wild mushrooms with his family in Victoria has died after eating a poisonous mushroom, the local health authority said Dr. Richard Stanwick, Island Health’s chief medical health officer, said the boy’s death would be the first recorded in the province from a B.C. death cap mushroom, if it is confirmed. Mycological examination of the mushrooms collected at the same site suggests that the boy probably ate the Amanita phalloides, or death cap mushroom, an authority news release said. Tests are ongoing to confirm the presence of specific toxins in his system. “This tragedy reinforces how important it is for recreational mushroom hunters to know the difference between a poisonous and non-poisonous mushroom,” said Stanwick. “To the untrained eye, it’s easy to mistake a toxic mushroom for an edible one.” More at: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

Twin boys conjoined at the head are finally separate after 20-hour op that veteran surgeon almost stopped half-way through

A pair of twins conjoined at the head has been successfully separated after a 20-hour operation. Anias and Jadon McDonald, 13 months old, are recovering in the Bronx’s Montefiore Hospital after their life-threatening operation. According to their surgeon – Dr James Goodrich – it is incredible they made it this far. Half way through the operation, the veteran neurosurgeon considered stopping the procedure altogether when they discovered the boys shared far more brain tissue than they had expected – even despite using 3D imaging to prepare. More at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/

Fussy eating in children may be partially genetic

“Is your child a fussy eater? It could be down to genetics not parenting,” the Daily Mirror reports. A study involving twins suggests food fussiness as well as food neophobia – unwillingness to try new foods – may partially be the result of genetics. The researchers looked at differences in parent-reported behaviour between identical twins (who share 100% of their DNA) and fraternal twins (who share 50%) to estimate the influence genetics had on eating attitudes. They estimate that for food fussiness, 46% of cases may be down to genetic influences, and for food neophobia, 58% may be down to genetic influences. Shared environmental influences were also found to play a role, particularly for food fussiness. More at: http://www.nhs.uk/

Giving antibiotics to children increases their risk of allergies such as eczema and hay fever, study finds

Giving antibiotics to children increases their risk of allergies such as eczema and hay fever, scientists have found. Researchers analysed the records of nearly 400,000 patients to find a link between antibiotic use and development of allergies such as hay fever and eczema. Undergoing multiple courses of antibiotics in early years increased the chances of being stricken with allergies, researchers from Utrecht University, in the Netherlands, said. More at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

Less than one in five children exercising daily

Only 16 per cent children in the south rast of England are doing physical activity every day, according to a recent study. New research published by Premier Sport alarmingly revealed that only 16 per cent of children in the South East of England are doing physical activity every day, and that over half of parents are worried about obesity levels in children. The study found more than 58 per cent of parents in the South East think that children should be properly fitness tested in schools. Additionally two thirds believe their children would benefit from more education around fitness in school. More at: http://www.worthingherald.co.uk/

If parents are good at maths, so would be children: Study

Bad at maths? Your parents are to be blamed. Parents who excel at mathematics produce children who would also excel, says a study, which shows a distinct transfer of math skills from parent to child. The study specifically explored inter-generational transmission — the concept of parental influence on an offspring’s behaviour or psychology — in mathematic capabilities. “Our findings suggest an intuitive sense for numbers has been passed down knowingly or unknowingly from parent to child. Meaning, the math skills of parents tend to ‘rub off’ on their children,” said lead researcher, Assistant Professor at University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, US. More at: http://www.financialexpress.com/

Omega-3 supplement may improve reading skills in kids, says study 

LONDON: Supplements of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids may improve reading skills in schoolchildren, a new study has claimed. Children with attention problems, in particular, may be helped in their reading with the addition of these fatty acids, researchers said. The study included 154 schoolchildren from western Sweden in grade 3, between nine and ten years old. The children took a computer-based test (known as the Logos test) that measured their reading skills in a variety of ways, including reading speed, ability to read nonsense words and vocabulary. More at:http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/

Healthy diet may boost children’s reading skills: study

Kids whose diet was rich in vegetables, fruit, berries, whole grain, fish and unsaturated fats, and low in sugary products, did better in tests, the study found. Parents, take note! Children who eat a healthy diet may have better reading skills in the first three years of school, a new study has claimed. The study by researchers at the University of Eastern Finland and University of Jyvaskyla in Finland involved 161 children aged six to eight years old, and followed up on them from the first grade to the third grade in school. The quality of their diet was analysed using food diaries, and their academic skills with the help of standardised tests. More at: http://www.dnaindia.com/

Fantasy play may boost creativity in children: study

London: Parents, take note! Engaging in fantasy play could boost creative thinking in your children, a new study suggests. “We wanted to test whether children who engage in fantasy play are more creative,” said lead researcher Dr Louise Bunce of Oxford Brookes University in the UK. “This is because, theoretically, playing in make-believe worlds requires imagination to conceive of the world differently to its current reality, which is also necessary to think creatively,” said Bunce. Bunce and her team interviewed 70 children aged four to eight years old to assess the extent to which their fantasy
play involved pretending in a way that mirrored real-life, pretending in a way that involved events that were improbable in reality or pretending in a way that involved impossible events. More at:http://www.deccanchronicle.com/

Medicinal Mishaps Leave 30,000 Children Deaf Each Year

A public service advertisement revealing the tragic effects of improper juvenile medicinal use went viral online in China, according to reports. Around 30,000 Chinese children are rendered deaf after using medicines unsuitable for children each year, says the China Central Television (CCTV) advertisement, reports the People’s Daily. The photo shows five-year-old deaf girl Fu Xinuo. She lost the ability to hear after taking medicine for a high fever three years ago. “After taking medicine, my hearing grew weaker and weaker. I knew there were sounds around me. I tried very hard to listen, but I just couldn’t hear anything. Mama, I’m scared,” Fu recounted during the video. More at: http://dailycaller.com/

Don’t let children play video games for more than TWO HOURS a week or it will damage their social skills

Playing video games is good for children’s brains – but only if they play no more than two hours a week. More than this increases the likelihood the child will get into trouble at school with their teachers, fight with their friends and have reduced social abilities. But rationing gaming to just two hours found that for children aged 7-11 playing games for one hour a week led to better motor skills and higher achievement scores in school. More at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/

How an early bedtime can have lasting effects on kids

Making sure your little ones get enough sleep just might be one of the best things you could do for their health, both now and later on, experts say.

Scientists have long known that children who don’t get enough sleep may be at an increased risk of obesity, among other health concerns, but a new study suggests that having a late bedtime is linked to a greater obesity risk later in life, too. So, an early bedtime may be better. More at: http://edition.cnn.com/

8.4 per cent of packed lunches send with primary school children to school by their parents do not meet minimum requirements in nutritional standards

A recent report drawn up by a team of researchers from Leeds University in the UK has revealed that 98.4 per cent of packed lunches send with primary school children to school by their parents do not meet minimum requirements in nutritional standards. Fewer than 20 per cent of the boxes met the requirements for energy, zinc or vitamin A, three quarters did not meet the requirement for iron, over half had sugary snacks, and almost half had sweetened drinks. The big enemies were chocolate bars, packets of crisps and carbonated drinks. According to the United Nations Organization, the number of overweight children under five years of age is set to almost double from 42 million to 70 million worldwide.

Rough guide for Daily intake (depending on the child)

Aged 2/3: 1.000 to 1.400 calories; 2 – 4 ounces (50 to 100 g.) proteins; 1 to 1.5 cups of fruit and also vegetables; 2 cups of dairy, 3 – 5 ounces (75g. to 125 g.) grains

Aged 4-8 G = Girls B = Boys

Calories 1.200 to 1.800 (G), 1.200 to 2.000 (B); Protein 3 – 5 ounces (75 – 125 g.) G, for Boys, upper limit 5.5 ounces or 135g.; 1 to 1.5 cups of fruits G, for Boys, 2 cups for upper limit; 1.5 – 2.5 cups of vegetables (G,B); 4-6 ounces (100 – 150 g.) of grains (G,B); 2.5 cups of dairy (G,B)

Aged 9-13

Calories 1.400-2.200 (G), 1.600.to 2.600 (B); Protein 4-6 ounces (100 to 150g.) (G) 5 to 6.5 ounces (125 to 162g.) (B); 1.5 to 2 cups of fruits (G,B); 1.5 to 3 cups vegetables (G), 2-3.5 cups (B); 5-7 ounces (125 to 175 g.) grains (G), upper limit 9 ounces (225g. (B); 3 cups of dairy (G,B). More at:http://www.pravdareport.com/

Dietician shares advice on breakfast brain foods for kids

Research reveals how important that first meal of the day is, especially for kids heading off to school.  One study found kids who ate breakfast had higher test scores than those who didn’t. Studies have also shown that kids who don’t eat in the morning have a harder time focusing, and they become more tired in school. But that morning routine isn’t always easy.  If we’re going to rush through something, it’s probably breakfast.  We got advice from a dietician, mom of two Anne Thacker, on two quick meal ideas that are packed with nutrients. More at: http://www.cleveland19.com/

Why Touching Your Kid’s Back Is Really Good for Their Brain

We’ve got the best news for hug-loving moms everywhere: New research shows that lovingly touching your child in one simple yet specific way can actually set them up to be better social beings.

The research, which was published in the August issue of neuroscience journal Cerebral Cortex, found that the frequency with which a parent touches their child is linked to the development of that child’s “social brain.” What does that mean, exactly? Well, to conduct the study, the researchers observed 5-year-old children as they played with the mothers and took note of the number of times the mothers touched their children, the Huffington Post reports. They then followed up with the children two days later — and found that the children who had been touched more exhibited more activity in their “social brains,” a.k.a. the parts of our brains that allow us to successfully interact with other human beings. More at: http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/

Tennis Gets Your Brain in Shape, Helps Kids in the Classroom

It is obvious that the movements within the game of tennis have a direct impact on heart rate and muscle function, but would you ever consider that they could also have a distinct and noticeable effect on brain performance? Research released byConscious Life News suggests that activities such as sports drills and high-intensity exercise aid in the development of as many as six separate parts of the brain. The variation within the game of tennis is unique, requiring full-body power as well as short bursts of quickness. This fluctuation of action separates tennis activities from generic exercise such as running and biking by combining multiple levels of exercise into a single workout. The anaerobic nature of match play calls upon the body to exert intense amounts of energy and focus into short segments, drawing on the cerebellum to coordinate movement while maintaining a consistent amount of attention. More at: https://www.ustaflorida.com

Want smarter kids? One study suggests video games

For parents concerned their children may spend too much time gaming, a new Australian study of 15-year-olds has found a potential link between video games and exceptional academic performance. The study examined the test scores and video-gaming habits of more than 12,000 Australian high school students and found that the teens who played online video games nearly every day scored 15 points higher than average in math and 17 points higher than average in science. While the research cannot prove conclusively that gaming alone was responsible for the test performance, study author Alberto Posso told the U.K.’s The Guardian it was an encouraging argument for gaming generally. “When you play online games you’re solving puzzles to move to the next level and that involves using some of the general knowledge and skills in maths, reading and science that you’ve been taught during the day,” Posso said in The Guardian article. More at: http://www.deseretnews.com/

Junk food commercials trigger unhealthy choices among kids: Study

Watching food commercials on television or elsewhere may change the way children value taste, leading to more impulsive food choices, finds a new research. Junk food commercials on pizzas and burgers during TV programmes influence food choices among children and their brain activities as well, say researchers, adding that the children’s decisions are driven by tastiness rather than healthfulness.

For the study, 23 children aged between 8 and 14 years rated 60 food items on how healthy or tasty they were and the researchers studied the children’s brain activity while watching food and non-food commercials and undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). “The results of this study show that watching food commercials may change the way children value taste, increasing the potential for children to make faster, more impulsive food choices,” said Bruce in a paper published in the Journal of Pediatrics.More at: http://indianexpress.com/

Kids With Mild Asthma Can Take Acetaminophen: Study

Acetaminophen does not worsen asthma symptoms in young children, a new study finds. Acetaminophen (Tylenol, Panadol) and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) are often used to treat pain and fever. Some previous research has suggested that frequent use of acetaminophen may worsen asthma in kids with the respiratory condition. To investigate, researchers studied 300 children between the ages of 1 and 5 with mild, persistent asthma, which is defined as having symptoms more than two days a week, but not daily. All of the children used daily inhaled treatments to manage their asthma. During the study, they received either acetaminophen or ibuprofen to treat pain or fever. The small percentage of kids whose asthma symptoms worsened was about the same with both medications, according to the study published in the Aug. 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. The findings could help guide the care of children with asthma, according to the researchers. More at: http://www.philly.com/ 

Home study environment is crucial to children’s learning

A student’s academic performance is influenced by a host of factors, including the learning environment both inside the classroom and at home. While students may have only limited control over the environment in their classrooms, they and their parents can do much to create home study environments that are conducive to learning.

* Create a “distraction-free” zone. Today’s students are inundated with distractions. Whereas students were once most distracted by radios, televisions and the great outdoors when studying at home, nowadays kids must also find time to focus on their studies with their tablets and smartphones just a stone’s throw away. When choosing a study area at home, parents can designate a “distraction-free” zone where no televisions, radios, tablets and smartphones are allowed. Children are increasingly dependent on their smartphones and tablets, and while such devices can sometimes prove useful to students, that benefit is often outweighed by the distraction they present. When kids study at night, be sure they turn off their smartphones and only use their tablets as study aids. More at: http://www.lowellsun.com/

Parents who force vegan diets on their kids may face four years in jail in Italy because it ‘could leave them brain damaged’

Proposed new laws would make it an offence to deprive children of the nutrients essential for their growth.

Elvira Savino, in the picture, says her bill would prevent “radicalised” diets being imposed on youngsters. Vegetarian and vegan diets lack can lack zinc, iron, omega-3 and vitamin D and B12, she claimed. And if her bill is successful, imposing such a diet on someone under 16 would become a criminal offence. The country has been rocked in recent months by a series of child hospitalisations caused by vegan diets. Last month, a 14-month-old baby was taken to hospital with the expected weight of a three-month-old. More at: https://www.thesun.co.uk

Junk food commercials are eating your kid’s brain

Commercials really are brainwashing your kids to eat crap.

Brain scans prove that junk food ads drive children to crave sweet and salty treats, and make them even more impulsive in grabbing tasty foods over healthy ones, the Journal of Pediatrics reports. Previous studies have shown a link between commercials and how much or what kind of food kids eat. And what parent hasn’t suffered through their child demanding Doritos or McDonald’s after a catchy TV spot? But the new research actually took MRI scans of 23 children ages 8 to 14 while they watched these ads, and scanned them again afterward. They found that the brain’s reward center became more active after the little ones eyed the food commercials. More at: http://www.nydailynews.com/

Playing video games could boost children’s intelligence (but Facebook will ruin their school grades)

Parents may think them a waste of time, but playing video games could boost teenagers’ test results at school. Students who played video games almost every day scored higher in subjects including maths and science, a new study says. But students who spent hours on social media sites such as Facebook were more likely to fall behind. Researchers tested more than 12,000 Australian 15-year-olds in maths, reading and science, as well as collecting data about the students’ online activities. Students were tested according to the Program for International Student Assessment (Pisa) – a test that measures 15-year-old students’ reading, mathematics, and science literacy every three years across more than 70 countries. More at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/

When a Child Thinks Life Is Unfair, Use Game Theory

Researchers have found that children as young as 19 months seem to understand the concept of fairness, and appear surprised by scenes of blatant favoritism – such as when one puppet is given toys and another puppet goes without. By age 7, some children will choose to forgo candy rather than get a significantly larger share than others.

Given that a child’s desire for life to be fair seems to be hard wired, it’s better not to fight it, says researchers, Instead, they suggests applying classic game theory strategies to help children make “fair” decisions and stop the squabbling. They include:

I Cut, You Pick: This classic strategy for dividing simple things, like cake, allows each child to make a choice: One divides the desired good, and the other chooses. If the thing to be divided has a different value to each child, or if there are more than two children with an interest. But if nothing else, it works well for cake.

Tit for Tat: When children are faced with the job of cleaning up a joint mess, suggest “you pick up one, then he picks up one,” said researcher “We had mixed results with Tit for Tat,” he admits. His 9-year-old son was able to manipulate his 6-year-old brother into doing more. “This probably works better with children who are closer in age, or at least both over 7.”

Random Dictator: In Random Dictator, a family faced with a choice that affects every family member (what movie to watch, what cereal to buy, which restaurant to go to) has each family member write down a selection, then draws a single one from a hat. One person ultimately chooses — but who “wins” is random.

Auction: How to decide who chooses the one show that will be watched tonight or gets first play on the iPad on a road trip? Try auctioning the desired reward to the highest bidder, using chores, other privileges or even Halloween candy as currency. “This involves some learning,” said researcher. “It’s easy for a child to overvalue something in the moment and get stuck doing way too many chores.” At first, he says, parents might have to monitor the fairness of the auction process itself — but children who like it may end up running auctions on their own. More at: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/

Mobile phones, digital devices may harm your kid’s attention span, report   

Mobile phones, digital tablets and remote-controlled toys may harm children’s memory, attention span and coordination, a French public health body has warned. Overuse of mobiles also seems to damage the well-being of young children, disrupting sleep and leading to tiredness, stress and anxiety, a report by the national health and safety body Anses said in a report published Friday. Having reviewed evidence of the effects of electromagnetic waves on children under six-years-old in specialised literature from around the world, Anses experts recommend that parents limit their children’s access to digital equipment. More at: http://en.rfi.fr/environment/

Deficiency of iron, zinc weakens the kids’ memory

A recent study by the paediatrics department of Umaid Hospital here has revealed that deficiency of minerals like iron and zinc has been weakening the memory of the school children. The study shows that in the absence of healthy food, children between the age group of 6-11 years have low of levels of iron and zinc. The study was carried out on 101 children from two government schools. They were divided in two groups according to their ages. Children between the ages of 6-8 years were kept in the first group whereas the second group included children between the ages of 9-11 years.The study, spanning one year, gave the results that 18.7% children were iron deficient and 12.8% children were zinc deficient, which was weakening their memory. More at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/

Emotional abuse in childhood may lead to migraines in adulthood

Child abuse and neglect are, sadly, more common than you might think. According to a 2011 study in JAMA Pediatrics, more than five million US children experienced confirmed cases of maltreatment between 2004 and 2011. The effects of abuse can linger beyond childhood – and migraine headaches might be one of them. Research has found a link between experiencing migraine headaches in adulthood and experiencing emotional abuse in childhood.

More at: http://www.stuff.co.nz/

Low testosterone makes you a better dad

A crying infant can trigger a testosterone dip in some men, which turns out to be a good thing. Less testosterone may make them more empathetic and less aggressive, which may make them better fathers. This new information on hormonal changes in men comes from a study which was conducted with graduate student Patty Kuo at the University of Michigan. In both mothers and fathers, the sound of a crying baby can trigger several emotional responses, from empathy, to annoyance, to aggravation. The best response is empathy, as aggravation can lead to aggressive behaviors that put the child at risk. More at: https://www.washingtonpost.com

Flu Vaccine in Pregnancy Offers Brief Protection of Babies

 

According to a recent study published online in JAMA Pediatrics, unborn babies are temporarily protected by their mother’s flu shot, but that immunity fades within weeks after birth, a new study found. This was a RCT which included 1026 infants and 1023 controls. The vaccine was about 86 percent effective until the babies were 8 weeks old. But between 8 and 24 weeks, its power dropped rapidly, and the effect of the vaccine became statistically insignificant.

 

More at: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/

New Study Links Childhood Hunger to Violent Behavior

New research shows that children who often go hungry are twice as likely to have impulsive, violent behavior while growing up — and later in life. Alex Piquero of the University of Texas at Dallas helped author the study, which is among the first to link childhood hunger with violence. How hunger fuels violence: Hunger has an indirect effect, so what happens early in life: Food affects brain development, it affects cognition, it affects impulse control, and those things that affect control in life then affect crime later on down the road. So, for example, people that have impulse control problems are more likely to buy things on the internet for cost, they’re more likely to experience failed relationships or more likely to experience failed interpersonal relationships, bad employment outcomes, and crime. Childhood hunger is affecting things that are in the middle of that chain that then penultimately predict violence.”

More at: keranews.org

Does fat affect your brain? Study finds obese have less grey and white matter in key areas

The study’s findings appear to fit with mounting evidence linking higher body mass with poorer impulse control and other “cognitive deficits.” A tiny but provocative Canadian-led study suggests overweight and obese people have significantly less grey and white matter in key brain regions, offering what the researchers believe is a “biologically plausible explanation” for why heavier people tend to have reduced cognitive functioning, greater impulsivity and “altered reward processing.” The study is based on sophisticated brain images of 32 otherwise healthy adult volunteers recruited from two Baltimore neighbourhoods, and the researchers did not test their subjects’ mental acuity or performance. However, the findings appear to fit with mounting evidence linking higher body mass with poorer impulse control and other “cognitive deficits” that may undercut a person’s efforts to lose weight.

More at: nationalpost

tired student girl with glasses sleeping on the books in the library

Adequate sleep cuts major health risks in children, teenagers. Ensuring ample time for sleep is one of the best ways to promote a healthy lifestyle for a child

Both lack or excess of sleep can lead to health risks like hypertension, obesity, diabetes and depression among children and teenagers, warns a research team led by an Indian-origin scientist. The findings showed that insufficient hours of sleep could increase the risk of accidents and injuries and also lead to self-harm, suicidal thoughts or suicide attempts among teenagers. More at: http://indianexpress.com/

Here’s How Much Sleep Your Child Should Get. Babies four to 12 months should have about 12 to 16 hours per 24 hours (including naps) of sleep daily

Toddlers one year old to two years old should have as much as 11 to 14 hours per 24 hours (including naps) of sleep daily. Kids three years old to five years old should have up to 10 to 13 hours per 24 hours (including naps) of sleep daily. Children six years old to 12 years old should have nine to 12 hours per 24 hours of sleep daily. Teenagers 13 years old to 18 years old should have at least eight to 10 hours per 24 hours of sleep daily.

More at: http://www.techtimes.com/

Adequate folic acid during pregnancy could cut obesity risk in children

Folic acid or folate — an essential B vitamin – reduces the foetus’ risk for neural tube defects, which are malformations affecting the brain, spine and spinal cord. “Maternal nutrition during pregnancy can have long-lasting effects on child health, as well as the health of a mother after pregnancy,” said lead researcher Xiaobin Wang, from Johns Hopkins University in the US. More at: http://www.hindustantimes.com/

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