Incorporating healthy foods into your child’s diet can improve their
overall health, fight weight gain, regulate their moods, boost brain power
and give kids energy they need to stay active all day.
“As a parent, I know how hard it can be to get children to eat healthy,”
said Kayla Hefner, CVMC Child Health/Safety Specialist”.
Most kids love to snack throughout the day, but making it healthy can be
a challenge. To help tackle this issue, The Mayo Clinic has provided tips
on how to promote healthy snacks that kids will actually eat.
- Go for the grain– whole grain foods, such as whole-grain cereals,
tortillas and pretzels provide lasting energy.
- Mix and Match – Serve baby carrots or other raw veggies with fat-free
ranch dressing or hummus. Dip graham cracker sticks or fresh fruit in
fat-free yogurt. Spread peanut butter on celery, apples or bananas.
- Broaden the menu– offer new foods to kids such as avocados, pineapples,
red and yellow peppers or mangos. Mix together for a colorful snack
- Revisit breakfast– certain breakfast foods can be snacks in the evenings.
Consider dried cereal mixed with dried fruit and nuts or microwaveable
oatmeal made with low-fat milk and mixed with unsweetened applesauce and cinnamon.
- Sweeten it up– healthy snacks don’t have to be bland. To satisfy
your child’s sweet tooth, offer lower fat puddings and frozen yogurt
or frozen fruit bars. Make smoothies with milk, plain yogurt, and fresh
or frozen fruit.
- Have fun– Use a cookie cutter to make shapes out of low-fat cheese
slices, whole-grain bread or whole-grain tortillas. Make fruit kebabs
or show your child how to eat diced fruit with chopsticks. Make a tower
out of whole-grain crackers, spell words with pretzel sticks, or make
funny faces on a plate using different types of fruit.
There are several ways to make eating healthy fun for kids. Get them involved
in the meal preparation and cooking process. They will be interested in
eating their meal knowing they helped create it. Parents- kids pay close
attention to how and what you eat. So be a good role model and demonstrate
how to make healthy choices. Have fun with a variety of foods. Make smiley
face pancakes, turn toast into hearts or cheese into stars. The more creative
the food the more likely kids are to eat it. For more healthy snacking
tips check out
The Health First Center Facebook pagethroughout the month for tips and recipes on healthy foods the kids will
actually eat. For more information, please contact Kayla Hefner, CVMC
Child Health/Safety Specialist – firstname.lastname@example.org or
(828) 485-2300 ext. 6204.