The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that kids between 5 and 17 years of age engage in at least 60 minutes of physical activity, ranging from moderate to vigorous levels every day. According to experts, this amount of activity daily will help boost a child’s cardiorespiratory and muscular fitness, as well as cardiovascular, bone, and metabolic health.
Children can achieve such workouts from sports, playing games, and engaging in other types of recreational activities they enjoy. The good news is that many kids are still physically active today (even if they have access to different types of devices, game consoles, and the Internet) and you can ensure that they always get the energy they need to always be on the go by feeding them well.
Sustaining Your Child’s Energy Levels
For kids to have enough energy to get through their daily activities including play and sport, they need to eat nutritious foods during meal times and in between. Unfortunately, many parents will have difficulties coming up with healthy snacks that can give and sustain the energy their kids need, and that they will also love to eat. This is because many parents either over think their choices or simply opt for ones that they consider are filling enough to give their little ones the fuel they need.
If you’re looking for healthy snack ideas for your active kids, here are five nutritious treats you can serve that they will also certainly enjoy:
1. Fresh fruit plate
Fruits are some of the easiest and most convenient snacks you can serve your kids. You don’t have to prepare or cook them. Simply wash or remove the peels and your little ones will be able to eat them quickly.
Apples, avocados, bananas, berries, mangoes, peaches, pears, and oranges are just some of the fruits you can place on a plate for your little ones. Fruits contain the right amount of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients they need to keep their energy up.
When you opt for organic fruits, you can make sure they are eating only the safest and healthiest fruits.
You can also skip the plate and simply give one or two pieces of fruits for your child to munch on in between meals. An apple, for instance, contains various nutrients crucial for a child’s normal growth and development and proper functioning. A bar of chocolate, on the other hand, is full of empty calories and sugar, and although it can be filling, will offer nothing nutritious to your child.
After spending hours playing (and sweating), your kids will appreciate something cool and filling. You can satisfy their craving by whipping up a yummy and nutritious smoothie.
Aside from being tasty and healthy, smoothies are easy to make. Simply combine one or two fruits, add some milk and ice, a dollop of yogurt or ice cream, and you have a ready-to-drink cold beverage. You can also even add some veggies such as carrots and kale to make the drink healthier. With a smoothie, kids will enjoy a refreshing beverage and, at the same time, give them the energy they need to do other tasks such as their homework and chores. It can also help them engage in other games or physical activities at home.
3. Yogurt parfait
A yogurt parfait is another cool, filling and nutritious treat you can give your kids on the go. In a tall glass, arrange (by layers) yogurt and your kids’ choice of fruits (berries, mangoes, avocados, peaches, or bananas), and top it off with granola or whole rolled oats.
You can put as many layers as you can so that you can incorporate more yogurt. It’s an easy-to-make snack that children will love to eat, especially after a particularly tiring day at school.
4. Spiced nuts
If your kids prefer treats that are crunchy, skip the chips and give them nuts instead. Peanuts and other nuts are great sources of calories, proteins, carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and healthy fats – nutrients that will fuel an active child’s body.
You can take this snack’s health benefits a notch higher by adding some flavor. You can either sweeten them with some organic cinnamon and honey or make them spicy or zesty with a sprinkle of chili pepper and squeeze of lime.
Some of the healthiest nuts you can give your little ones are almonds, cashews, pistachios, and walnuts.
5. Trail mix
If your children aren’t easily satisfied by plain nuts, you can add some seeds, dried fruits, and chocolate candies to come up with a trail mix. For a healthy mix, use organic dried unsweetened cherries, apricots, and raisins. You can also opt for mini chocolate chips instead of candies.
The ingredients found in a trail mix contain all the nutrients kids need to fuel their body, In addition, they are rich in fiber and ALA – a good fat.
Three well-balanced meals a day will give your kids the energy they need to be active in school and engage in their sport or activity of choice. You can make sure they still have the fuel they require to go about their activities before the next meal will be served by giving them a healthy, filling and tasty snack.
Managing Director, Bidfood Middle East
About the author :
Hisham’s corporate career started in the UAE in late 1988; he worked for firms such as R.J. Reynolds, Danone Group, and Richemont Group across several countries in the GCC. He climbed up the ladder in roles and responsibilities to manage regions and businesses in the Middle East. In 2003, after 15 years of business experience, he took a leap of faith towards starting up something on his own. At almost 10 years in, the business has grown to cover 3 major markets with a turnover exceeding US$60 million. Hisham’s vision is to continue his regional expansion to the rest of the Middle East markets.