Healthy Snacks for the Summer Time
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Summer is here with warmer and longer days. Children are out of school, running and playing outside more often. To maintain their level of energy, parents need to establish or reinforce good eating habits. This is very important since according to the latest health statistics in the United States, close to two thirds of the population is obese. Parents and caregivers need be aware of this and teach children good eating habits from an early age.
Here are some suggestions for healthy snacks that are fun and easy to make:
- Cut raw vegetables or fruit into chunks, then skewer onto thin sticks. To prevent discoloration, dip apples, bananas, or pears in orange juice after cutting them
- Cut celery, zucchini, cucumbers or carrots into sticks or coins shape, and then dip in prepared salsa or low fat dip.
- Peel banana, dip it in yogurt, then roll in crushed breakfast cereal and freeze.
Put a half-cup low fat fruit yogurt and half-cup cold fruit juice in a non-breakable, covered container. Make sure the lid is on tight, then shake it up and pour.
- Make fruit shake- ups - mix half-cup cold milk with three tablespoons of instant pudding and your favorite fruit. Place in a covered container and shake well.
- Using cookie cutters with fun shapes cut slices of cheese, meat and whole grain bread. Assemble to make fun sandwiches.
To use edges of the sandwich, spread a small amount of sweetened condensed milk, sprinkle with shredded coconut and bake for 5 minutes.
- Mix peanut butter and bran or corn flakes in a bowl. Shape into balls with clean hands, then roll them in crushed graham crackers.
- Put a small scoop of ice cream or frozen yogurt between two oatmeal cookies or frozen waffles. Make a batch ahead and freeze.
- Fill celery with peanut butter or cream cheese and arrange raisins along the top for "ants on a log".
To maintain a healthy weight a child should be encouraged to participate in active playing and eat a healthy diet. Skipping meals lead to overeating at other times of the day for this reason it is important to feed them healthy snacks. Stock up the pantry and your refrigerator with healthy foods. Children eat what you serve them. When they go to the refrigerator believe or not they they will eat what they see.
It is okay for kids to have ice cream, candy or other treats sometimes. Those treats are a learning opportunity about moderation and the importance of limiting portions.
First-Rate Light & Healthy Snacks
- air-popped popcorn seasoned with herbs
- broth-based soups
- cereals (low-sugar, low-fat)
- cocoa (low-sugar, low-fat)
- English muffins
- fresh fruit
- frozen fruit-juice bars
- graham crackers
- low-fat or nonfat frozen yogurt
- milkshake or low-fat milk and frozen fruit
- pita chips with salsa
- plain nonfat yogurt with fruit and cinnamon
- rye crisps or rice cakes thinly spread with peanut butter or low-fat cheese
- vegetables marinated in vinegar or dipped in low-fat yogurt seasoned with herbs
- whole-wheat crackers