March is coming to an end already, which means there is only about a week left of National Nutrition Month. However, the end of the month shouldn’t signal the end of healthy eating for you or the children in your care. So here are a few tips to keep you moving towards a healthy lifestyle.
- Focus on fruits and veggies. They should make up 2/3 of your plate at a meal
- Choose items low in added sugars
- Buy minimally processed forms of foods. For example, frozen berries instead of berry flavored fruit leather
- Drink water – lots of water!
- Eat together and when possible everyone at the table should eat the same thing.
- Schedule meals and snacks at regular intervals. This helps maintain blood sugars (less grumpiness) and keeps everyone from getting too hungry or passing on healthy items
All of these little things will help you work towards the bigger goal of a healthy lifestyle. The other important thing you can do to help children learn about healthy eating early is to get them involved. Give children preparation tasks based on their age and skill, and let them observe what they can’t do themselves. Children will have the opportunity to learn about food preparation and cooking, and they are more likely to eat what they helped make.
Here is an easy and tasty option the kids can have their little hands on from start to finish!
1 banana, sliced
4 strawberries, sliced
1 peach, pitted, peeled, and sliced
1/4 cup fresh blueberries
1 10-inch flour tortilla
1 Tbsp cream cheese
1 Tbsp vanilla yogurt
1. Slice bananas, strawberries, and the peach into small thin pieces, and set aside.
2. On a tortilla, spread approximately 1 Tbsp of cream cheese.
3. Place the sliced fruit and the whole blueberries down the center of the tortilla.
4. Drizzle 1 Tbsp of yogurt over the fruit.
5. Roll the tortilla burrito style. To shape the burrito, first fold the bottom edge of a softened tortilla up and over the filling. While holding the bottom of the tortilla over the filling, fold in the sides. Then, starting from the folded bottom edge, roll up the tortilla to encase the filling.
Makes 2 servings. Serving size 1/2 burrito.
Fun fact: The word burrito means “little donkey” in Spanish
Recipe source: Cooking is Cool: Heat-Free Recipes for Kids to Cook by Marianne E. Dambra
Tips source: Rethinking Nutrition: Connecting Science and Practice in Early Childhood Settings by Susan Nitzke, PhD, RD; Dave Riley, PhD; Ann Ramminger, MS; and Georgine Jacobs, MS