Healthy Snacks for Kids in School
Good nutrition is very important to a child’s learning and development. It is crucial that children eat balanced meals and the right kind of snacks to help them stay focused and energised for study and recreation.
There are many kid-friendly foods available today that will support this, as well as aid motor skills, enhance memory and retention, and boost brain function.
Brain function relies mostly on carbohydrates for fuel. Foods such as whole grain cereals and fruits allow for glucose to be released into the blood stream, which then energises brain cells.
In order to counter “brain drain” or mental lethargy, it is recommended that a child gets a regular and balanced supply of glucose during the course of the school day.
Kid-Friendly Lunch Box Fillers
Whether it’s for your child’s regular school lunch box, an after school snack or breakfast at home on the weekend, the following foods will give your child the nutritional boost needed for their developing mind and body.
100% Whole Grains
This includes brown rice, whole wheat/meal bread for toast or sandwiches, oatmeal and granola cereal. Oatmeal is a traditional breakfast food that is still very popular today – and rightly so!
Studies have shown that children who regularly ate oatmeal for breakfast tend to score higher on memory tests compared to those who ate refined cereals, or no breakfast at all.
These days more and more children are really into smoothies and shakes, therefore, adding oats is a great way to “fibre up” their beverage, whilst also providing them with a more sustained source of energy.
Fruit slices with nut butter
I guarantee that almost any child will love this snack! Gone are the days of peanut butter being the only choice of nut butter at your local supermarket. Today we are spoilt with a wide variety of nut and seed butters – from almond butter, cashew butter, and sunflower seed butter to name a few.
This is very refreshing to know since so many children today have peanut allergies. A great and nutritious way to enjoy these nut and seed butters is to spread them on your fresh fruit slices of choice – or better yet, your child’s favourite fruit of choice.
Apple slices and almond butter make for a great combination, or you could try dipping the fruits in a creamy cashew butter.
Not only do they provide a great source of protein, good fats and fibre, but the nutrient choline found in some nut butters helps to maintain healthy brain cells.
Kids School Trail Mix
A simple and tasty trail mix such as organic almonds and cranberries, or cashews, sunflower seeds, coconut flakes and raisins makes for a nutrient-rich snack during the school day.
The Vitamin E contained within the nuts and the iron-rich dried fruits will help to protect brain cells from inflammation. Be sure to include a little flax seed or chia seeds to your mix so that the essential omega-3 fats are added, which are important for eye health and brain development.