NUTRITION FOR HEIGHT GROWTH- WHY FOCUS ON IT EARLY

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Height growth in a child is necessary in his growing ages till he/ she reaches puberty. The rate at which child grows is determined by the growth charts that a pediatrician may have and can assess whether the child is in normal range of height in accordance to his age and weight. There are sub categories under which a child is classified in terms of height such as short, normal or tall. Nutrition plays an important role here that means when a child has good nutrition he will have a good height and fall in a category of the normal range. 

The problems that affect the child’s height can be due to the height of parents to be short i.e due to genetics or reaching the pubertal stage late which can have an impact on the height of the child. Also in major terms of nutrition, inadequate nutrition of the child, deficiency of production of growth hormone, malnutrition, kidney diseases, heart or lung diseases or any metabolic diseases which can cause loss of appetite. According to the best nutritionist in Delhi, the growth hormone- the pituitary gland dysfunction may affect the height growth of the child.

The growth of the child can be achieved by diet or nutritional advice on what can you do to increase the height of the child. The blood parameters can also determine whether the child can grow more or not. It is very important for athletes to achieve a height too. The children who are unable to grow to the potential height according to their growth chart it may be because they are not getting the adequate nutrition which they require for the normal range of height for a person. Here it becomes necessary to give them nutritional advice as what ways they can take or they can do to get adequate nutrition for the child.

To get adequate nutrition they are ways to increase appetite like making interesting foods for the child, which are calorie dense or colorful foods that are kid friendly, giving them small and frequent meals, or involving them in a physical activity which makes them tired and eat right and more. Include all kinds of food right from the start to make them develop a taste and liking for these foods. Limit intake of soft drinks and unhealthy foods which can make them sick and immune system weaker. The best nutritionist in Mumbai says that drinks like tomato juice and other foods that contain lycopene help in increasing height. Also physical activity like basketball, swimming, long jumps and foods like milk, beans, whole grains, eggs and protein rich foods like chicken etc helps in increasing height. 

A study was conducted which showed that children who were malnourished when given a high protein diet increased in height and also helped in curing of diseases.  It concluded that when protein rich foods are given in a good amount it can help show positive results in children who are malnourished and also makes their immune system stronger to avoid diseases. Another study showed that the relationship of decreased weight for height and decreased height for age are risk factors for illness and death in children. It also showed that socio economic factors and other environmental factors also affect the height and growth of the child. 

Nutrition growth retardation (NGR) is a common term used to define the lesser growth in children and a study stated that the NGR is mostly prevalent in low class or population at risk of poverty. Children with short stature present that it is the inadequate nutrition and low IGfR levels that are responsible for the short stature and delayed sexual development in these children. With time, because of lesser nutrient intake they get adapted to the lesser nutrient intake. Once these are detected nutritional rehabilitation is taken up to catch up on growth though it might be challenging to make a change in the nutritional habits of these children when they reach adolescent. 

The reason of mainly focusing on growth in early years is because this may cause a short stature in adult life. This also depicts the standard of living between and within the populations. The genetic pool of the parents being short statured may be a reason for the offspring to have a short statured height. This also shows that genetics and nutrition also play an important role in the height and growth of a child other than the environmental factors. 

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