Why is eating breakfast so important for kids?
Why breakfast is important:
For adults, breakfast is very important as it gives us energy to start the morning, it helps us control our weight and improves concentration and performance throughout the day. Equally breakfast is as important to adults as it is for kids, and a great healthy breakfast is the most vital part of our childrens’ health and nutrition.
For kids, having breakfast is even more important than it is for adults as children are still growing and need that energy and nutrition to help their bodies and brains develop optimally. Imagine your food is your fuel, and for children who are active and constantly learning, they will need regular refuelling.
Boosts Brain Power
As well as adults, kids who skip breakfast are more likely to be tired throughout the day and will have poor concentration levels. Choosing a breakfast that is packed full of fibre, carbs, grains and protein will help boost kids’ levels of concentration, improve memory and will stop complaints of hunger in schools.
What to have and what not to have
If breakfast is a busy time of day in your house then feeding the kids what they need quickly might be a daunting experience, but it doesn't have to be. By stocking up on all the ingredients you need before, you can deliver quick healthy breakfasts that kids will enjoy. By preparing breakfast the night before, or getting the kids to help prepare their own, you can cut the time in the morning.
Alternatively, if your kids aren’t hungry or everyone is in a rush out the door, make sure there are plenty of easy-to-grab pieces of fruit, yoghurt, smoothies, muesli bars (no sugar) that can be eaten quickly or on the go.
Giving kids the wrong food
in the morning can be just as bad as not feeding them at all. Pastries, sugary cereals, and breakfast bars may look easy and appealing but have pretty much zero nutritional value, and the high sugar content will affect your child’s performance during the day. Sugar gives energy quickly but does not have any long lasting effect, and will cause the body to ‘crash’ once this sugar has run out and there is no other energy being released. So avoid sugar in the morning at all costs.
Great sources of protein carbs, and fibre are foods like: whole grains, fruits, vegetables, eggs, seeds, beans low fat meat and dairy, grains and nuts. There are hundreds of options for breakfast that don't need to be time consuming to create. Smoothies containing fruit, juice and plain yogurt can be created in seconds. So can chopped fruit with whole grain cereals and milk. Crushed nuts, a small dollop of honey and a plain yogurt can be quickly made and eaten. Homemade granola bars are great for when you’re on the go, they are also better than sugar-packed store bought ones, and easier to make than you think.
For more on kids’ healthy eating please see our Food and Nutrition page.
Article sponsored by Glanmore Foods,
Award Winning Healthy Irish School Lunches