It can easy to just pull up to a drive-thru window and place your order rather than taking time out of your busy schedule to cook a well-balanced meal. For the sake of your kids and their future, you need to. Keep them healthy now so they can learn to be healthy later on in life.
This is the most important meal of the day. Breakfast is the fuel to get your kids (and you) going in the morning. Food entering the digestive system starts-up many of your body’s systems and gets your metabolism going. You want to start the day off right. Sugary cereals may have been good for those of us who remember Saturday morning cartoons; and they can be fun on the weekends for kids nowadays, but you do not want to feed these foods to them on a regular basis. Instead, start them off with a bowl of oatmeal rather than marshmallowy cereals. With society always in a rush, many people feel like they do not have time to fix breakfast. Some even skip it altogether. For your kids’ health, slow down; wake up 15 minutes early (yes, I know you are already getting up early) and give them something their little bodies need to grow. French toast or pancakes would be fine, and quick. Add in some strawberries or blueberries, or even some bananas, and that makes it even better! Just limit the amount of syrup you use. When in a rush, whip up some scrambled eggs and whole-grain toast. Whatever you do, NEVER let your kids skip breakfast!
For the majority of children in the United States, lunch is served in the cafeteria of a school. While the school systems are required to have food available for students, and some provide that food for free, they are not always healthy meals. School systems are extremely budgeted and so, to keep within the budgets, they tend to go with the cheapest foods rather than the ones that provide children with the best sources of vitamins and minerals. If you are able to pack a lunch for your child, try to include grilled chicken or low-sodium turkey. These are healthier than meats like ham or roast beef. Kids enjoy eating fruits so include bits of melon and grapes; they are quick to eat, perfect for the timed periods schools alot for lunch. Carrot sticks, yogurt, mandarin oranges are perfect for lunch boxes as well.
Snacks are easier to control than the abovementioned meals. You are probably not pressed for time (unless there is an event you need to take the kids to) and the kids are home with you rather in someone else’s care so you can control what they eat when they get home from school. Try and stay clear of packaged cakes and candies. Stick to eating fresh by providing your kids with plenty of fruits; and yes, even some vegetables. Apples, celery with peanut butter, carrots with lite ranch dressing (notice it says “lite ranch”), and watermelon are all great snack foods to give your children. And do not allow them to drink sodas! The empty calories and sugars they take in will counteract the health benefits of the fresh foods you feed them.
Dinner: the final meal of the day. It should not be a big meal as Americans tend to make it. Kids will be going to bed not long after eating. If you cook thick, heavy foods then those foods will be sitting on their little stomachs overnight. This could lead to upset tummies that keep them up at night, interrupting their sleep patterns and making them irritable the next day. Chicken with broccoli and rice would be a good meal to serve as would a spinach lasagna (just do not tell them it has spinach).