Details for FAMILY FOCUS COVER 4
Tasty ways to make legumes a lunchbox staple Language disorders: the importance of early intervention A language disorder can seriously affect a child’s development. Here’s what you should know about this type of impairment and how you can spot it early. What are language disorders? Language disorders affect an individual’s ability to understand others and express ideas clearly. They include: • Receptive issues that make it hard to understand language • Expressive issues that make it hard to clearly express thoughts • Mixed issues that make it hard to both use and understand language These disorders typically cause a language delay that’s noticeable before the age of four. Common symptoms Receptive issues can be hard to spot in young children, although having trouble following simple directions is a common sign. Signs of expressive disorders are easier to identify and include: • Limited vocabulary and trouble expanding it • Frequent use of placeholder words like “um” and “stuff ” • Frustration at the inability to convey thoughts clearly • Not formulating sentences that make sense • Limited variety of sentence structures These signs usually appear starting at three years old and persist into preschool. Why acting early matters A language disorder can negatively impact a child’s development. The inability to understand others or to express ideas often results in social isolation or behavioral problems. In addition, limited vocabulary and understanding of grammar means affected children are likely to struggle in school. Legumes such as chickpeas, lentils and beans are a great source of essential minerals, fiber and protein. However, they’re not always popular with kids, so you may need to get a little creative in the kitchen. Here are some ideas for incorporating them in meals, snacks and even desserts. Meals If your kids don’t like legume salads or lentil soup, you can add navy beans to stews, chickpeas to couscous and kidney beans to white rice. You can also replace some or all of the meat in spaghetti sauce with lentils or make a legume-infused chili. Snacks Hummus and crackers are a classic lunchbox snack. Additionally, you can mix pureed legumes with plain yogurt to make a savory dip for carrot sticks and other veggies. Desserts A great way to make desserts healthier is to substitute a bean puree for some of the ingredients. Pureed black beans make great brownies, for instance. Thanks to their subtle taste, your kids won’t even notice they’re in there. Another way to nosh on legumes is to roast them. Season chickpeas or edamame beans and then cook them in the oven for a crunchier snack that may become as coveted as potato chips. With a little creativity, you can make legumes a staple of your children’s diet. With the huge variety available, there’s almost an endless array of possibilities.