Keep Health in Mind When Planning School Day
MONDAY, Sept. 6 (HealthDay News) -- As parents prepare for their
children's return to school, they need to remember that healthy
meals and snacks are essential for learning.
"Parents can make the school day easier for their children by providing nutritious and yummy breakfasts, lunches and snacks that promote optimal learning. Everyone is in a rush in the morning, but it only takes a few minutes on Sunday to plan healthy meals to fuel your child's week," Karin Richards, director of the Exercise Science and Wellness Management program, and director of Health Sciences at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, said in a university news release.
Richards offered the following advice for parents as they plan
breakfast, lunch and snacks for their school-age children:
- Include at least three types of foods into each meal, making
sure to include some type of protein and complex carbohydrates,
such as whole wheat bagels or pasta. The complex carbohydrates will
provide energy while the protein will satisfy your child's appetite
for a longer period of time.
- Bring your child to the market with you and let him or her
choose one fruit or vegetable each week. Encourage kids to try new
and interesting produce such as kiwi, papaya and edamame.
- Monitor portion size. Three to four ounces of meat (about the
size of your palm) is plenty. Adjust the amount based on your
child's age and activity level.
- Add more vegetables into your child's diet, even if you have to
sneak them in. For example, try zucchini bread, veggies with
low-fat dip, or shred carrots into tomato sauce and soups.
- For beverages, suggest low-fat milk or water. If you child
prefers juice, make sure it's 100 percent juice.
The Nemours Foundation has more about
children and healthy eating.
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Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.