Looking for ways to get your kids to eat better this school year? Here are some healthy back-to-school snack tips you may find helpful.
Avoid Empty Calories
Things like fruit snacks, chips, cookies, etc. are super popular with kids, but they have little to no nutritional value and don’t curb hunger very well. So, if possible, try to avoid giving your kids “empty calorie” snacks and opt for something more filling instead. Calorie-dense snacks are powerful and can provide your kids with much-needed energy and focus as they study, attend class, compete in sports, and interact with teachers and classmates.
Each child’s taste buds are different, so if your child doesn’t like the first healthy snack you send, try not to get too discouraged! Here are some specific ideas for healthy snacks your kids might enjoy eating:
- Apples dipped in nut butter or sunflower butter
- Carrot sticks and hummus
- Turkey and cheese wrap
- Protein bars (low in sugar, high in protein)
- Homemade protein balls (peanut butter, oats, dark chocolate chips, and honey)
- Whole-grain crackers and cheese
- Greek yogurt with berries and granola
Pinterest has some great, healthy snack ideas as well. And as always, you can talk to your doctor or a nutritionist for specific guidance, particularly if your child has multiple allergies you’re working around.
Try to Make Healthy Food “Fun”
Sometimes kids turn their nose up at food, not because of how it tastes but because of how it looks. Here are some ideas for ways to make healthy food look more appealing.
- Cut vegetables like cucumbers, peppers, and carrots into fun shapes and serve with hummus or ranch dip
- Pair foods your child loves with foods they’re still learning to like like peanut butter and celery or spinach in a smoothie
- Have your child help pack their lunch or snack (kids may find healthy food more fun if they are able to help pick it out/prepare it themselves)
Feeding your kids healthy food can feel like a daunting task, particularly if you have a “picky eater.” But with a little creativity and experimentation, you may discover your child isn’t as picky as you originally thought!