It’s so easy to run over to Sam’s Club in Latham or BJ’s in Albany and choose a giant assortment of chips to stuff in your kids’ lunch bags. It's relatively inexpensive. They like it. It's convenient. It’ll last a few weeks.
We’re all so busy and sometimes we just don’t have the time to prepare a healthy snack. But it’s worth going the extra mile and spending just a few minutes to upgrade the contents of that lunch.
Today’s children are larger than they’ve ever been. According to the American Heart Association, about one in three kids/teenagers can be considered overweight or obese. Between video games, on-demand streaming, tablets and cell phones, kids are less active and are more distracted than ever. And it’s not just them. The same roadblocks to a child’s health are the same ones that adults face. It’s not all due to inactivity. Genetics can play just as large of a role. And so can unhealthy eating behaviors, which is something fully within our control as parents.
Remember, kids are easily impressionable. It’s up to you to set the example for how to lead a healthy lifestyle. Go outside and play with your child. Limit the number of trips to the drive-thru. Packing your own lunch for work? Make yourself the same healthy lunch. These are small changes that can make a big difference for you and your child.
These 10 simple snack ideas all take less than five minutes to prepare. You can go the route of preparing all of your snacks for the week ahead on Sunday night, but also remember that variety is key to a healthy diet. Send your child off to school with these small snacks that will keep your child healthy, happy and full.
One last tip: Get in the habit of reading ingredients labels at the store. Show the older kids how to, also. Here’s a general rule of thumb: If you can’t pronounce an ingredient, it’s not good for you. Try to avoid the middle of the grocery store as much as possible, where all of the processed chips, cereals and treats pull us in with their temptations. Don’t be a stranger to it, but just remember, everything in moderation. A healthier you can mean a healthier child, which is a win-win for everybody. These snack ideas are a great place to start.