Matthew Kadey, MSc, RD
From morning to night, nutritious meals and snacks are what we should be feeding our younger generation for a healthier future. Start out with these kid-approved—and kid-involved—back-to-school recipes that parents will grow an appetite for too.
When it comes to boosting a child’s health and scholastic performance, there’s no better place to start than in the kitchen. Home-cooked family repasts that include well-balanced meals and snacks give tykes the nutritional building blocks needed to prosper mentally and physically. And take heed of a Journal of the American Dietetic Association study which found that children who enjoyed more family meals (and also watched less television while eating) were more likely to have healthy body weights. But let’s face it: when the crazy, back-to-school days of September leave parents in a tizzy, it’s no wonder the tasks of proper menu planning and meal prep often get put on the back burner. So let us help you dodge meltdown at mealtime with this menu for a full day’s worth of low-fuss nutrition-packed meals and snacks that are tasty enough to award the cook a resounding “yum yum, gimme some.” And to help foster the next generation of great chefs, each tummy-tempting recipe offers an opportunity for smaller hands to get into the action.
These foods can help growing bodies stockpile the necessary nutrition needed to achieve their best.
|oats||Whether steel-cut or rolled, oats provide a slower bleed of carbohydrate energy to help children power through their mornings. Sugary boxed cereals? Not so much.|
|Greek yogurt||Delivers protein and calcium—essential parts of healthy bones and teeth. Steer clear of flavoured versions to limit processed sugar intake.|
|beans||Packed with fibre to temper blood sugar fluctuations, allowing for more even-keeled energy levels.|
|berries||From blueberries to raspberries, these antioxidant-packed gems give kids some disease-fighting tools from the start.|
|grass-fed beef||A source of highly absorbable iron to help arm tykes with the energy needed to learn and play.|
|dark green leafy vegetables||A reliable source of vitamin A needed for proper vision and bone development and fibre.|
|hemp hearts||These nutty tasting seeds offer up omega fatty acids to feed growing brains.|
|tomatoes||These deliver antioxidants, including vitamin C, to bolster immunity and help build body tissues.|