- What is DHA
DHA(docosahexaenoic acid) is a long-chain omega-3 fatty acid. DHA forms the major structural fat in the brain and is essential to build string and efficient connections between neurons. About 60% of the dry weight of the brain is made up of fat, with DHA being the most abundant. This is one reason why DHA is known as the building block of the brain. Besides the brain, DHA constitutes 60% of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA) in the retina of the eye.
- Why is DHA so important for growing children
DHA is an extremely crucial nutrient which is required for the development of brain and vision. More than 95% of a child’s brain develops in the first 6 years of their life. In the initial years, almost 700 new connections are formed in the brain every second. This is what forms the foundation of learning. These connections in the brain cells are promoted by the key nutrient of DHA. In a child’s brain, DHA accumulates in the largest lobe called frontal lobe, which is responsible for memory, speech and emotion. The critical brain activities in children like the sense of touch, speech and thinking capabilities peak before the age of 6. DHA also increases the levels of “feel good” neurotransmitter, serotonin and the “memory boosting” chemical acetylcholine.
- Should I get a fortified milk formula with DHA?
Yes. DHA helps support your child’s normal brain development
Parents should consult their pediatricians for a high quality nutritionally balanced formula that gives your child adequate DHA and brain building nutrients during the crucial growth years of your little one.
- What are the common sources of DHA?
Some of the commonly available DHA-rich foods are fish and fish oils. However, It is very difficult to get kids to eat fish on a regular basis. Therefore, foods with low levels of DHA like milk. Rice. Vegetables and chicken can be consumed, but is it still difficult to get adequate levels of DHA from commonly consumed food.