Getting kids to eat healthy may not always be easy and none of us want to argue with our children about what they can and cannot eat! Many parents end up overlooking healthy snacks and going straight to the kid-friendly snacks. By Kid friendly snacks we are talking about cookies, French fries, chips, candy and other processed foods. Foods that are loaded with sugar, saturated fats and other unhealthy ingredients. It is also more difficult as your child gets older to change their diet if they have been allowed to eat foods that are high in sugar and fat over a long period of time.
Our children would be much better off learning from the time that they are toddlers to avoid those types of snacks. I have found that there are many healthy snacks kids like to eat. It just may take a little extra planning on the part of the parents to incorporate nutritious foods into their child’s diet. There are many healthy snacks that are high in fibre, low in fat and have calcium, iron and other vitamins and minerals that kids love to eat.
Here are a few: · Apples are a great snack food. They are juicy, sweet and contain vitamin C. Apples are low in calories and have about 5g of fibre for an unpeeled whole apple. Be careful not to confuse the nutrition of a raw apple with apple juice, applesauce or apple jelly. When we process apples into other foods we lose a lot of the nutritional benefits like fiber and adding a lot of sugar and extra calories!
Peanut butter is a yummy snack, which is rich in protein and fiber. The fat that is found in peanut butter is mostly mono- and- poly-unsaturated fat, so it is better than the saturated fats that are found in many other high-fat foods. Kids love to dip celery sticks or apple wedges in peanut butter!
Low-fat yogurt is a healthy snack for children, especially for kids who don’t consume a lot of milk, as yogurt is a great source of calcium. When choosing yogurt for your kids look for the ones with live active cultures and added probiotics. These ingredients will help the intestines digest their food properly! You will also notice that many of the yogurts that are marketed towards children are very high in sugar content. This is one snack worth reading the labels on. You want to make sure that your little ones are not missing out on the nutritional benefits of yogurt. Kids love to dress up their yogurt by making a parfait with berries or granola.
Homemade trail-mix is a treat enjoyed by kids of all ages. What makes this treat special is that your children can be the ones to help create this snack. When choosing different items that will go into your snack mix looks for foods, which contain whole grain cereals, dried fruits, nuts, sunflower seeds and pretzels. This type of snack is great to crunch on and it will provide your child with extra iron, calcium, vitamins and other minerals. You can bring snack mix anywhere and it’s easy to pack.
Fruits and vegetables are some of the best snack foods for children. There are plenty of fruits and vegetables that they like, such as carrots, red peppers, celery, bananas, strawberries just to name a few. I have found that kids will eat just about anything if they have something to dip it in. Ranch dressing, peanut butter, hummus and cool whip can make any fruit or veggie taste better. Try treating your child to a fruit smoothie or cut up some vegetable and make vegetable kabobs. You will be surprised how quick they will gobble them up!
Remember to introduce your kids to a variety of nutritious snacks at an early age. Offer children many choices, and set a good example by eating healthy snacks as a family. A little extra planning on the part of the parents will teach children how to eat healthy for a lifetime. I am just 24 but I am trying my best to instil these habits in my 2 year old.