There are many reasons why breakfast has been touted as the most important meal of the day. Generally we haven’t eaten since the evening before, about 12-15 hours ago. So it breaks your fast (break-fast) and gives your body energy and nutrients needed to face the day. This is particularly important for young children with little tummies that need to eat more often.
Numerous studies have indicated children and adolescents skip breakfast more than any other meal of the day, and that only 38% of teens eat breakfast every day. This is unfortunate because research also reveals a positive link between eating breakfast and cognitive and academic performance. Additionally, skipping breakfast has been linked as a contributing factor to childhood obesity.
Some tips for fueling up your kids at breakfast:
- Keep a variety of breakfast foods on hand, such as ready-to-eat cereals, instant oatmeal, yogurts, fruit and white and flavored milk, whole wheat breads/bagels
- Think out of the box and keep items for nontraditional breakfast foods – peanut butter and jelly or meats and low-fat cheeses to go on crackers or bread; dried fruit; protein bars; smoothie ingredients; leftovers; etc.
- You do it! Modeling is one of the best motivators; if your kids see the rest of the family eating breakfast, they are more likely to want to do it
A healthy student is a better student, so fuel your child’s brain with a good breakfast every morning this school year!