Encouraging healthy eating can feel like a big task in a world that glorifies sugary foods, chocolate and chips over foods that are healthy and will help the kids in your childcare facility grow up strong. Luckily, kids look up to their elders, so you can help to guide them in the choices they make. Here at Early Days Foods we advise to try incorporate fruits and vegetables into every meal – including breakfast. Also, limit processed foods and have healthy meals and snacks planned for your kids as well as yourself.” It’s better to try to set the example of “do as I do,” and not the more common “do as I say.”
Here are a few fun facts about food that might make your kids think twice about the foods and snacks they choose.
You can start the conversation with, “Did you know that…
- A 355 mL can of coke contains 10 to 12 teaspoons of sugar. That’s 150 to 180 empty calories. Better to cut your thirst with some water or milk.
- Fish, chicken and other lean meats and meat alternatives such as beans are filled with protein to help keep muscles strong.
- Leafy green vegetables like broccoli and orange vegetables such as carrots and sweet potatoes are full of vitamins to keep you energized and help you play harder for longer.
- Fruit is better than the juice! In fact, a raw unpeeled apple has almost 10 times more fibre than a cup of apple juice.
- Sports drinks are composed mostly of water, but their second biggest ingredient is sugar. While sports drinks are OK to drink sometimes after a lot of exercise like a soccer game, you’ll get more nutrition (and less empty calories) by having water plus a complex carbohydrate like fresh fruit.
- Your body needs good oils and fats to give your muscles quick energy. But if you eat too much, it gets stored in your body. Good fats are found in nuts, avocados, olive oil, canola oil and soft, non-hydrogenated margarine. Bad fats are found in hard margarine, vegetable shortening, butter, coconut and palm oils, fatty meat and full-fat dairy products.
- Lower-fat milk and dairy products and fortified soy products are crammed with calcium to build strong bones that help you to stay safe while playing.
- Eating fibre makes you feel fuller and it’s healthy for your heart. Eating a slice of white bread won’t satisfy your hunger nearly as much as a slice of 100% whole-wheat bread with the germ. High-fibre foods also have vitamins and minerals to keep your heart strong.
- Sugary soft drinks, sugary cereals, white bread and white rice break down quickly in the body, making you hungry soon after. They can also give you a quick rush of energy, but that is soon used up, leaving you tired and even cranky.
- Nutritious snacks keep you feeling energised throughout the day, helping you beat energy slumps and keeping your metabolic rate up, which helps in maintaining a healthy weight. For example, a small handful of nuts with a piece of fresh fruit has fibre and healthy fats that give you the energy that lasts, unlike what you get from junk food such as potato chips or candy bars.
Making healthy food the quickest, the easiest choice will also increase the chances that your kids will make that choice. That’s why it’s also helpful not to keep junk food in your day-care facility and at least out of reach and sight of the little ones.
Leave it to the experts…
At Early Days Foods we take pride in providing healthy children’s meals for nursery children throughout the island of Ireland, providing home quality meals. We are a specialised catering service which helps nurseries serve quality meals for their children 52-weeks a year, just like you would at home.
Early Days Foods is one of Ireland’s premier Nursery food providers, with an extensive menu. Your kids can enjoy a healthy range of quality meals just like home without the extensive costs of preparing the food in-house. Our mission is to make mealtimes easy and healthy, one nursery at a time.
If you would like to speak to our experts or see how we as a company can help you, please contact us on: ROI: 042 942 4069 / NI: 028 4175 2500 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The information on this Web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your paediatrician or family doctor. Please consult a doctor with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your or your child’s condition.