Good nutrition does translate to good learning. Research shows that students who eat breakfast regularly get better standardized test scores, have better behavior, and tend to be less hyperactive.Research also shows that 9 to12-year-old children who have high glycemic index (GI) breakfasts (sugary breakfasts) tend to eat more at lunch, as compared to those who have lower GI breakfasts.
The Importance of breakfast
An example of a good breakfast for children would include an egg, a slice of whole grain toast with nut butter, a piece of fruit, and a glass of low-fat milk. Other good choices are Tofu, Lean meat, and whole-grain cereals. The protein and fiber from the whole grains will keep your child satisfied until lunch time.
Avoid sugary breakfast cereals, white-flour pancakes and syrup, which willleave your child hungry and fatigued by mid-morning. If your child still has a tendency to get hungry at mid-morning, send an apple, whole grain crackers, nuts, or cheese-snacks, instead of sugary cookies or white-flour crackers.
Despite efforts to provide nutritious lunches for students, many schools still dispense poor choices, such as fast-food, greasy pizzas, fries etc. Changing such lunches with healthy fgresh foods can result in improved behavior and zero truancies, as in a certain High-school in Wisconsin.
Healthy Lunches help keep your child’s mind sharp and ready throughout the afternoon. Try to convince shools to change the range of food their canteens offer, and teach kids the importance of good nutrition. You can also pack lunches for them.
Light after-school snacks will refuel your kid’s body before play or study time. Nuts, Fruits, or veggie sticks and dips are excellent. By all means, avoid chips, sodas, and sweets, as studies show that high GI foods only make kids hungrier.
Life-Long Health Means Good Nutrition
Remember that children who eat healthy will tend to make healthy eating choices as adults. Whereas overweight children tend to become overweight adults.
Educate your kids about healthy foods. Follow these tips from kidshealth.org:
- Study the food pyramid together and ask your child to pick out some of his favorite foods from each group.
- Let them help you plan a meal that includes healthy servings of protein, vegetables (1 or 2), and a healthy fruit for dessert.
- For younger kids, keep track of all the fruits and vegetables they eat because we need at least 5 servings a day.
- Make snack time more fun by trying to make different recipes and snack ideas together.
- Lastly, since you are teaching your kids about good nutrition, you have to back it up by setting a good example.