Healthy Summer Snacking

Kids are officially home for the summer! According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity rates have more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents over the past 30 years. Studies have shown that the rate of weight gain in children tends to double during the off-months and decrease or return to normal during the school year. A lot of this weight gain can be contributed to summer snacking and lack of physical activity.

During the summer months kids are usually at home throughout the day searching for something to snack on. Summer snacks in a typical home usually consist of cookies, chips, and candy. Try offering healthier alternatives to your children instead. Here are a few ideas that are sure to satisfy even the pickiest eaters.

  • Raw vegetables with ranch dip
  • Whole wheat crackers with peanut butter
  • Fruit kabobs drizzled with yogurt
  • Low-fat yogurt with fruit and granola
  • Homemade trail mix using your favorite whole-grain cereals and adding pretzels, nuts, dried fruit, and a few chocolate chips, but not too many!

Make sure your kids are getting proper nutrition while they are home during the summer. Try offering them nutritionally dense foods that will keep them full longer. For example, offer an apple instead of applesauce. Snacking on sweets should not become a habit. Offering delicious options will make choosing healthy snacks easier. Keep healthy snacks available and easy to reach in your kitchen and make sure fruits and vegetables have visual appeal. Children are also more likely to select foods that are pre-portioned for them. If you are able to use these tips, your kids will be more energetic this summer, as well as healthier for the upcoming school year.

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7/1/2021 2:53:04 PM
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