Is breakfast the most important meal of the day? Absolutely yes, especially for kids heading off to school. But researchers estimate that up to 35% of children and adolescents bypass breakfast, for various reasons…. getting up late, not hungry, busy with other morning tasks, and for some children, it is not even offered or prepared for them. It really helps so much if parents are not just providing breakfast but also eating breakfast with their children, if work schedules allow.
Why should kids eat breakfast?
To recharge their batteries after a night of sleep and no food.
They’ll be more alert, and have better concentration in school
Kids may even have better grades!
Kids who routinely eat breakfast have a better intake of nutrients to meet their needs for growth, energy, and brain-work.
Breakfast Skippers have a much lower daily intake of:
fruits and vegetables
vitamins A, B, E, C, and the minerals iron, calcium and potassium
Tips to make breakfast happen on a hectic school day:
Preset the table the night before.
Have everyone get up a few minutes earlier.
No TV, phones or other distractions.
What makes up a healthy get-up-and-go breakfast?
Protein - milk, yogurt, cheese, eggs and nut butters
Starch – whole-grain cereals, breads, and flour tortillas; potatoes
Fruits and/or Vegetables -fresh, frozen, light-packed canned and juices
Okay, there are the traditional breakfast ideas like
fried egg sandwich on whole-grain toast + fresh peach slices
oatmeal cooked with milk and diced apples
Cheerios with skim milk and frozen blueberries
peanut butter and banana slices on whole wheat English muffin
But your kids- and you - may prefer non-traditional foods in the morning like
grilled cheese sandwich on whole-grain bread + seasonal fruit cup
bowl of leftover beef stew with vegetables
whole-grain sub roll with leftover turkey-spinach meatballs
smoothie made with Greek yogurt, frozen fruit and milk
slice of veggie pizza
leftover chicken-vegetable stir-fry over wild rice
Use your imagination to develop interesting and healthy breakfast menus – and your kids will thank you for it!