- Posted September 26, 2013 by
Back to school nutritious snacks
While kids need snacks to help fuel their brains in the classroom, some choices are clearly better than others.
Not only are bags of chips, cookies, and soda contributing to the obesity epidemic in youngsters around the globe, these healthy meals and foods are high in fat, sugar, and calories and can lead to bouts of focus loss and fatigue, experts say.
In addition, a 2009 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that children who ate a diet high in junk food were more likely to be hyperactive than those who did not.
Still, not all snacks are bad, and active children especially may need extra calories throughout the day. Nutritionists recommend packing snacks for your children that include fresh and dried fruits, whole-grain crackers and cheeses, nuts, yogurt, and vegetable sticks and baby carrots. Avoid processed snacks high in fat and sugar. Since studies show that kids are more likely to eat foods that they select themselves, offer a few choices and get them involved in making their own snacks.
Also, in research published earlier this year, a team from Cornell University found that school kids gobbled up sliced apples, while whole apples went mostly ignored, suggesting that bite-size pieces of fresh fruit, or grapes and strawberries, could have more appeal to young kids. Findings showed that kids dislike eating large pieces of fruit for two main reasons: for younger students, who have smaller mouths and might have braces or missing teeth, whole fruit is too difficult to eat. For older girls, eating whole fruits in front of others is messy and potentially embarrassing, they say.
Another recent study of 8- to 10-year-olds also found that teaching your children about nutritious snacking can get them to eat more healthfully for years to come. Also, because children learn by example, be sure to be mindful about your own snacking, experts say.
Source: ctvnews. ca, September 2, 2013