Think Outside the Juice Box

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Think Outside the Juice Box


Back to school means back to healthy routines. A breakfast, snacks, and a balanced lunch are the keys to getting on track after the freedoms of summer have come to a close. When making simple changes, you can ensure that you and your family make a smooth and healthier transition into your new fall schedule.
We live such busy lives that often we rush right out the door each day without providing our family with a nutritious breakfast to start the day. Our bodies require constant fuel throughout the day, and breakfast jump starts the metabolism into high gear. Whole grain cereal, oatmeal, eggs, or whole wheat toast are all great quick and easy options. Even a high fiber cereal bar on the go can do the trick if you are extremely pressed for time. Go ahead and add a piece of fruit with that and you’re sure to have an alert student.

It is truly amazing how often children like to eat throughout the day. Not long after lunch, they are often asking for a snack! We should model our children in this way, as snacking drastically minimizes our chances of overeating later in the day. Fresh, dried or canned fruit are great to have on hand in backpacks or desk drawers. Children love trail mix, whole grain pretzels, and baked chips for a mid-day snack. Keep an eye on portion sizes, making sure it is truly a snack and not an additional meal.

With a long day coming to a close, the last thing we want to do is pack lunches for the next day. However, by skipping this important task, we subject our children to cafeteria food, and ourselves to the nearest fast food restaurant. Plan ahead for the week. Preparation is one of the most valuable habits we can get into this fall. Whole grain breads, lean lunch meats, and “good-for-you” toppings should make the top of your grocery list. Include your children in the decision-making process; they will be more likely to eat their packed lunch at school versus trading with their classmates.

A healthy breakfast and lunch, along with tasty snacks, will help you and your children have an enjoyable and productive day-all day, every day.

*The information on this site is designed for educational purposes only and has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any health problems or illnesses without consulting your pediatrician or family doctor. Thank you!

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~by Kimberly Olson

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