When considering your toddler’s sleep habits, there is always a big picture to look at. If we just sleep train your toddler and don’t question their daily activities and their diet and routines then we wouldn’t be doing our job very well.
One of the food groups we always ask about is omega 3 as this is the richest source of DHA – one of those really essential fatty acids. We know that this neurologically supports healthy sleep function in all humans once they are eating solids.
A recent article published here highlights the findings of an oxford study published in the journal of sleep research. They looked at 395 children given either a DHA supplement or a placebo. The findings indicated that the omega 3 (DHA), helped consolidate night sleep (they had fewer night wakings) and had more restorative night sleep also. They believe the DHA is linked to the production of melatonin which we all know is the sleep hormone we need to fall asleep.
Considering the recent out cry over the number of parents using store bought melatonin (despite indications that where NOT medically prescribed this can have a detrimental effect), why not increase your toddler’s omega 3 intake instead, this will help your toddler naturally produce more melatonin.
If your toddler hates salmon and tuna, why not try some flax seed oil on their cereal, or speak to your pharmacist about a toddler omega 3 supplement.
If you want to get creative with fish or flaxseed oil, here are some ideas.
- Salmon and vegetable mini frittatas.
- Berry and Banana smoothie with flaxseed oil
- Salmon cheese spinach and tom quiche
- Salmon omelette
- Porridge with chopped walnut/banana/ and flaxseed oil (an omega 3 tryptophan explosion!)
- Savoury muffins with tuna or salmon
- Smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwiches or crackers
- Salmon or tuna mixed with cream cheese for a “dip” for vegetable sticks for “entrée”
1-3 times a week and you have your omega 3 covered!
Healthy sleep everyone!
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