Our kids need nourishing foods to ensure all the essential nutrients are met for optimal growth and development. Showing kids the right food choices sets them up for better learning, good memory and concentration. Teaching them about what foods to enjoy encourages them to eat the right foods and ultimately gives them better food choices as adults. Healthy eating starts in childhood and good food habits will contribute to a healthy body and mind into adulthood. The foods they consume to a large extent determines the quality of their physical, mental and emotional health. Healthy eating in childhood may help to reduce anxiety and depression in our teenagers and as adults may prevent obesity and diabetes. Focus on what foods to include as this will then discourage the need for other packaged foods that may contain preservatives and additives and harmful fats and sugar which are usually nutrient poor and have the potential to cause health issues.
Start with protein. Protein fills you up, helps to keep your blood sugar levels stable and gives you all the necessary amino acids for growing, making hormones and supporting our mood. We can source our protein from either animal or plant foods. Choose from organic/grass fed meat or chicken, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts & seeds in combination with dairy or legumes such as chickpeas or beans.
Vegetables: Eat the rainbow! Cut up carrots, cucumber, celery, capsicum and snow peas, slices of corn cob (lightly steamed the night before) are crunchy, really tasty and can be served with dips. Wraps are also easy to pack in the vegetables and leafy greens. This is a great way to add vegetables in their day.
Fruit: refreshing and packed with many nutrients. Choose a variety to ensure a healthy happy gut! Cut up orange, watermelon, nectarine, apples, grapes are just a few. Keep in mind seasonal fruits. Limit to 1-2 pieces of day as fruit is high in fructose.
Carbohydrates: are an important fuel for kids. Choose wholemeal or wholegrain bread, wraps or wholegrain crackers for longer lasting energy and increased satiety. Popcorn and wholegrain corn chips are a good snack with avocado dip.
Dairy: natural yoghurt with fresh fruit or berries, cheese cubes with wholegrain crackers or a frozen smoothie are good to include in lunches.
Healthy fats: Avocado dip, nuts and seeds such as in energy balls or nut and date slices are great sources of fuel for energy and are important fats for healthy brains, eye development and cognition and memory.
- Frittata, homemade chicken nuggets, meatballs, bean burger with tzatziki dip, wraps with meat and salad. Bento box with salad, soft taco and a protein and dip.
- Leftover dinner in a thermos flask such as spaghetti bolognaise, curry and rice.
- Dips such as hommus, white bean dip, avocado with wholegrain crackers
- Natural yoghurt with berries or fruit and add maple syrup to taste. Avoid ready-made yoghurts and low fat yoghurt as they are laden with sugar.
- Energy or bliss balls
- Homemade muffins with berries
- Fruit with nuts and seeds to reduce the sugar high
- Boiled egg
- Vegetable sticks with dips
If you would like to know more please contact our Naturopath Melissa at Yeronga Chiropractic & Wellness Centre 07 3892 1440.
Leave a reply