Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Fueling the Littles

I've always stressed about making sure my kids are eating enough of each food group.  Ok, well know they fulfill their daily sugar requirement-and then some!  But who doesn't?!?
Anyway, I was trying to really limit the typical snack foods, until Moshe came home complaining that other kids in his class have better snacks, like gushers and cookies.  

I'm not one to withhold, I think treats are perfectly ok-as long as they are taught their place.  I have heard horror stories of kids trading their carrot sticks for fruit rolls ups.  So I decided that I had no problem sending them a snack on the junky side (think pudding, pop chips, pirates booty, and an occasional cookie) as long as they eat the real stuff.  

According to the Mayo Clinic, boys ages 4-8 need the following on a daily basis:
3-5.5 oz. of protein 
1-2 cups of fruit 
1.5-2.5 cups of vegetables 
4-6 oz of grains
2.5-3 cups of dairy

To be honest, I don't think my kids eat this much on a daily basis, but I figure I can  bank on two meals a day where I can attempt to provide them with the most nutritional value possible.  I can already tell, like is the case with many adults, protein is going to be hard to squeeze in. 

So here's my game plan: 
  1. I always give a fruit and vegetable in their lunches, and we always have a vegetable with dinner
  2.  I will now be sure to include a fruit with dinner too.  
  3. They also get a yogurt and a cheese stick in their lunch.  
  4. Fortunately our main dinner component is a protein, unfortunately, my kids rarely eat it-but all I can do is try.
  5.  They will get their grain servings from breakfast and snacks.     
I'm always searching for good lunch and snack ideas.  Recently, I have been following the school lunch menu so my kids don't complain about what other kids get that they don't.  Plus, it takes the pressure off of me to always be creating a menu.  All that's left for me is to come up with their snacks.
Fruit S'mores 
a twist on a classic...
a sneaky way to get in some veggies and dairy! Plus it's dip-able!  My kids would love this!

I love this idea!  Chocolate dipped fruit is super easy and always a favorite.  I have no doubt my kids wouldn't have a problem eating this! 

What healthy food ideas do you have?

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