Kids Snacking Tips
By: Beth Aldrich
Give your kids a say. Offer comparable choices, such as regular or frozen yogurt, celery or carrots, whole-grain toast or whole grain crackers, apples or oranges. Better yet, recruit your children’s help at the grocery store when you’re selecting snacks or in the kitchen when you’re assembling snacks.
Designate a snacking zone. Restrict snacking to the kitchen. You’ll save your children countless calories from mindless munching in front of the TV.
Make it quick. If your children need to snack on the go, think beyond a bag of potato chips. Offer string cheese, yougurt sticks, cereal bars or other drip-free items.
Don’t be fooled by labeling gimmicks. Foods marketed as low-fat or fat-free can still be high in calories. Likewise, foods touted as cholestral-free can still be high in fat, saturated fat and sugar. Check nutrition labels to find out the whole story.
Go for the grain. Whole-grain snacks – such as whole grain pretzels or tortillas and low-sugar, whole-grain cereals can give your children energy with some staying power.
Out of sight, out of mind. If the cookie jar is full, your children will probablly clamor for cookies. But if there aren’t any cookies in the house, fresh fruit or raw veggies may seem more appealing.
Play with your food. Ask your children to make towers out of whole-grain crackers, spell words with pretzel sticks, or make funny faces on a plate using different types of fruit. Use a tablespoon of peanut butter as glue.