A new year brings opportunity to start fresh! What better way to get started than with a focus on healthy meals and habits for the entire family to try. Our Healthy Kids Here team has got you covered!
Here are five tips to help make 2021 your family’s healthiest year ever.
1) Involve children in the kitchen.
Not only is helping in the kitchen fun, but it helps children learn the basics of healthy eating and origins of food while fine-tuning culinary and math skills. Choose a family-friendly recipe such as the January Harvest of the Month recipe to prepare with your scholar!
2) Vary your veggies.
Eating a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables helps ensure you get all the nutrients you need!
For example, red vegetables, such as red bell peppers, are high in vitamin C which helps support your immune system. Dark green vegetables, such as spinach, are high in vitamin K, which supports proper bone health. Aim to eat three to five different colored veggies per week.
3) Enjoy meals as a family.
Family mealtimes are a great way to catch up with each other after a long day. Research shows that children who share meals with their family regularly are more likely to be adventurous with their food choices, keeping them away from becoming a picky eater.
Start small! Increase the number of times your family enjoys a meal together one meal at a time. If your family already eats together regularly, try introducing new recipes.
4) Keep healthy snacks on hand.
Children are always growing, which means they need a little extra fuel throughout the day to keep them going. Keeping healthy snacks on hand is a great way to satisfy hunger while also supporting their development!
Swap choices such as cookies and juice for healthier alternatives such as fresh fruit, whole grain crackers and a cheese stick.
5) Limit sugar sweetened beverages.
Like food, the beverages we choose are just as important when it comes to overall health. Reach for low-sugar beverage options such as unsweetened tea or water infused with a few pieces of your favorite fruit!
Did you know, a 12-ounce can of Coca-Cola contains 39 grams (nearly 10 teaspoons) of sugar?
Wishing you all a very happy and healthy start to the new year! Learn more about our Child Nutrition Program today at ideapublicschools.org/parents/cnp. Looking for more healthy recipes? Check out the Healthy Kids Here Cookbook!