Eating Healthy with the Kiddos this Summer
School is out, the kids are home for the summer, and they are hungry! Are you concerned about what your kids are eating? Research continues to show increasing dangers from kids consuming too much sugar. Even the FDA is changing labeling for foods to include added sugars. Most kids tend to love sugar. What is a parent to do? Don’t worry mom and dad; we have you covered! We’re here to equip you with some go to snack ideas, healthy food choices, and meal considerations that will help you help your kids eat healthier this summer!
The first consideration for healthy eating for the kiddos this summer is making sure a healthy breakfast is on the menu. Sleeping in during the summer can make it easy for kids to skip breakfast. Overeating can happen next. Don’t let this happen. Proactively plan a healthy breakfast for the whole family. Sugary cereals, donuts, and toaster pastries are super easy for the busy family; however, easy is not best in this case as these are some of the worst breakfast choices out there. A little planning can create fast breakfast options. Protein balls or breakfast quiches made in advance using muffin tins are a few easy, go-to options that are much healthier choices. If you can create a little more time in the mornings, eggs served with nitrate free sausage and/or bacon are a great options. Add in some berries and possibly a slice of Ezekiel bread topped with ghee or nut butter, and your kids are starting off their day fueled for success.
Snacks can be a real trip for parents in the summer. Kids are home and their growing bodies yearn for something to nibble on throughout the day. Our TwinFitness protein makes amazing shakes that taste like ice cream malts! (purchase here!) Add your favorite type of milk, a tablespoon of nut butter, some ice, and a scoop of our protein and blend until thick. Kids (and adults) love it! Protein pudding is another healthy option kids love made from our protein powder. Add 1 tablespoon nut butter of your choice with 1 scoop of our protein, water to the consistency of your liking, and a little seasalt to enhance the flavor – it taste sweet and yummy!
Keeping nitrate free beef jerky and cheese sticks on hand is a must for my teens. Kids love fresh fruit. Rice cakes with nut butter (and maybe a few chocolate chips) are a hit around my house as well. Raw veggies are huge! Let the kids dip them in a little dressing, guacamole or nut butter – just get them to eat those veggies! Nuts and berries are great energy sources – so much better than artificial sugary snacks and chips.
Kids also get especially thirsty during the summer and keeping them extra hydrated is very important in the heat. The more parents can push water, the better! Try encouraging the kids to add fresh fruits to their water for flavor and fun! Fun drinking cups can make a big difference as well for younger kids. Only allow the kids to use the cups when they drink water, this encourages the water consumption! I don’t even buy fruit juices. They are loaded with sugar, and spike insulin. That’s the last thing we want for our growing kiddos. If your kids like soda pop, summer is a great time to work on limiting this. Try Zevia as a soda pop alternative or all the new sparkling water options with natural flavors. Use these to make homemade popsicles as well. Add in thinly cut fresh fruit. Get the kids involved making the popsicles and they will be super excited to eat them! Parents, you can make your popsicles out of our BCAA drinks and fuel those muscles while enjoying with the kids!
Try enjoying more meals together this summer. Everyone is busy and on the go. Make a goal to eat more meals together as a family by doing it on purpose. Use this time to talk about nutrition and why eating healthy is important for health, as opposed to losing weight or looking a certain way. Try incorporating the kids into making some meals together and teaching them about healthy eating now, so it will be a normal part of their life as they grow and develop into adults.
You can do it! You can fuel those kids with healthy choices and help them learn in the process. If you feel you need help learning more about healthy family meals, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. All of our trainers are passionate about nutrition and helping families grow healthier – together!
By: Tanya Burk