An Apple a Day Helps Kids go Back to School the Right Way
By Hannah El-Amin, RD, CDE, Registered DietitianHealth and Wellness August 09, 2012
Summer days will soon be replaced with hurried schedules of school, homework and soccer practice. While a change in routine can be exciting, it’s important to remember to prepare your kids for a healthy school year before the first day.
The more kids know about what they’re eating, the more they will enjoy what they find in their lunchbox. I suggest taking children on grocery store trips to show them the healthy choices you are making for them.
Research shows that kids who eat breakfast not only behave better in class, but perform at a higher academic level too. It’s important to provide kids with a fiber-filled breakfast to help sustain fullness and provide energy throughout the day. Create a yogurt parfait with low-fat or Greek yogurt and fresh fruit, or fill muffin tins with egg whites and fresh veggies for a fun way to serve an omelette.
For lunch, pack sandwiches made on whole grain bread. Tuna salad made with light mayonnaise provides a great source of omega-3 that helps with brain function. Dessert can include dark chocolate, but there are other ways to satisfy your young student’s sweet tooth. Pack a ‘candy’ apple – one apple, sliced, with peanut butter and honey as a dipping sauce for a tasty indulgence at the end of their meal.
I suggest having light, healthy snacks on hand when kids get home from school to help them complete their homework. Simple ideas include whole grain crackers topped with pizza sauce and shredded cheese, fruit and yogurt dip or vegetable with hummus.
Getting back into a school routine should be a fun time for the entire family, and following a simple and fun nutrition plan can help get everyone off to a great school year.
Read the full story for more of Hannah’s tips on sending kids back to the classroom with proper nutrition.