Back-to-School Nutrition Tips To Keep Kids Healthy Year-Round
nutrition and a balanced diet are not only key for growth and
development, but also fuel brain cells for optimal learning.
Corporation, a Virginia-based managed healthcare company focused on
providing healthcare benefits to people eligible to receive Medicaid
and Children's Health Insurance Program benefits, has developed the
following back-to-school nutritional tips to help keep children healthy
and energized and to teach them good eating habits.
Make sure to
feed your child a balanced breakfast consisting of a grain (toast,
cereal, bagel, etc.), fruit or a glass of fruit juice, and a cup of
milk. Studies show that breakfast is the most important meal of the day
for children; it improves school performance and is necessary to help a
child's memory function well, AMERIGROUP said.
When packing your child's lunch, try to avoid foods that are high in fat and sugar. Instead:
- Pack animal crackers, fig newtons or vanilla wafers as opposed to candy and cookies.
- Substitute less-fattening foods such as pretzels, graham crackers or popcorn in place of greasy and unhealthy potato chips.
- Encourage your child to drink milk instead of soda at lunch. Calcium is essential for growing and developing bones in children.
- Help your
child get the proper amount of protein by packing them a sandwich made
with peanut butter or a lunch meat such as turkey or chicken.
Most children need a snack mid-morning and mid-afternoon to keep them from losing energy and becoming hungry and irritable.
- Stock your refrigerator with healthy snacks.
- Send your child to school with "ready-to-eat" slices of fruits or vegetables.
- Yogurt is high in protein and calcium and makes a tasty treat for your child.
- Offer your child frozen fruit snacks. Frozen fruit provides a tasty alternative to ice cream.
- Try to avoid buying pre-packaged snacks for your children. Instead, choose fresh produce, breads, nuts or cheese cubes.