Keeping children focused on school work can be a tough task at the best of times. All kids can benefit from brain food to get through the day. Here are some simple steps to get your children on the right track.
- Breakfast sets the stage for the rest of the day and instills healthy habits in your children. Don’t let your children leave home without a protein packed breakfast.
- Pack healthy snacks and lunches to school. Substitute sugary snacks with those high in protein. Nuts and seeds, yogurt and bean dips are a few ideas. Try the recipe for maple nut orbs in this newsletter.
- Have a healthy snack available for your children once they get home. Between lunch and dinner is a long time for children to maintain their energy. Leaving out cut veggies with various healthy dips can encourage your children to keep variety in their diet. It may take a few times of leaving out this spread before your children catch on to the yummy flavours of veggies.
- Encourage your children to drink water. The more water your children drink, the less they will be thirsty for soft drinks or juices. Limit these sugary drinks to the weekend.
- Your child’s brain requires healthy oils to function. These come from fish, nuts and seeds. Omega 3 oils are found in wild salmon, tuna, herring, mackerel and halibut. Rotate this seafood into the family’s diet 3 to 4 times per week. Prior to buying a fish oil, check with the company for quality assurance as contamination with heavy metals is always a concern.
- Consider a full spectrum light bulb to light up the area where your children do their homework. Some children are affected by our grey sky and could benefit from some extra sunshine to light up their brain activity.
- Review your home and especially your child’s room to make sure there are no potential allergens. Environmental allergies can affect your child’s immune system and mental alert state.
- Enroll your children in extracurricular activities to encourage exercise. Children need a balance of physical and mental activity for a healthy development.
Give your child the best chance to pass through this school year with flying colours.
Maple Nut Orbs -- Great recipe to involve your children
1 cup nut butter (cashew, almond, or tahini,)
1/3-1/2 cup maple syrup
1 cup oat bran
1 cup sesame seeds
½ cup coconut, shredded
In food processor, blend together nut butter & maple syrup. Add the oat bran, sesame seeds and blend until it has a stiff, dough-like consistency. Roll dough into individual orbs and then roll them in coconut. Chill. Makes 14 orbs.