In a generation of fast food mania and 24/7 schedules, creating healthy, tasty snack options for your kids might seem impossible. As the seasons change, and cold and flu viruses linger about the classroom, it is vitally important to build up your child's immune system in response, using the macronutrients and micronutrients of specific super-foods. In addition to building up the immunity of your kids, super-foods also support the healthy weight of children, when combined with daily activity.
The American Heart Association recently reported that nearly one in three American children and teens are overweight or clinically obese. The "western diet" which is highly comprised of processed sugars, bleached flours, preservatives and additives, has also been shown to increase the potential for ADHD, or attention deficit disorder. With these facts in mind, lets take a moment to look at a few snack options that can be fun, tasty and nutritious for your kids.
The wide spectrum of berries, from blueberries, raspberries and cherries, has developed a reputation for their renowned health benefits. These sweet foods are packed with anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals, yet are extremely low in calories. This makes snacking beneficial for your kids. Keep a variety of seasonal berries in the kitchen for your kids to enjoy throughout the day.
Seeds such as hemp seeds, flaxseeds or Chia seeds are powerful dietary additions that can be incorporated into cereals, over a salad or used with a whole grain to provide ample amounts of protein, fiber, vitamins C and iron. All these micronutrients show success in boosting immunity as well as supporting the building of lean muscle mass.
As opposed to standard white pasta, white bread or white rice, consider a more nutritious and flavorful alternative. The grains Quinoa and Amaranth rank low on the Glycemic Index. The Glycemic Index is a scale that evaluates how quickly a food is turned into sugar within the body. Low Glycemic Indexing foods reduce the blood sugar spike that is often accompanied by high Glycemic Indexing foods, such as bleached flours and sugar. These alternative grains are rich in flavor and very nutritious, while easy to substitute with traditional rice's and flours.
Keep a variety of 100% fruit and vegetable juice mixtures in the refrigerator. Make sure these juices have no added sugars, other than the natural sugars of the fruits. Many recent developments in the juice industry have combined both fruits and vegetables in tasty drink configurations, to provide ample nutrition and taste to children. It may be difficult to get your kids to eat a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables throughout the day, so supplementing with these healthy juices can provide energy, flavor and health benefits as well.