Feed your child’s mind with breakfastPublished 4:57pm Saturday, August 31, 2013
Here’s a great question from a fellow parent: “With school starting this week, I am worried about the morning routine with my kids. Before I pull out my hair, tell me again why breakfast is so important and what are some fast morning meal ideas that will get my kids out the door before the bell rings?”
Excellent question. Eating breakfast every day sets your kids up for success in the classroom because it feeds their minds.
Eating a nutrient-rich breakfast — at home or at school — boosts brain power and fuels a child’s learning. Research shows that kids who eat a morning meal have better memory, attention and behavior, and score higher on tests.
How can you make sure the breakfast is nutrient-rich?
Three nutrients stand out: protein, calcium and fiber.
Which foods can provide those nutrients? One food group that is necessary at breakfast is dairy, because it delivers a unique package of nine essential nutrients including calcium and protein. Fruit and whole grains can provide fiber and many other vitamins and minerals.
The morning meal matters. Here are some ways to get it to the table in a hurry:
•Keep breakfast foods on hand, like ready–to-eat cereals, yogurts, white and flavored milks and fruit.
•Stock a mom-approved breakfast bowl with grab-and-go nutritious foods, perfect for those kids that wake up a little too late. What to include? Whole grain bagels, whole grain crackers, cheese cubes, string cheese, yogurts, apples and bananas, individual cups of peanut butter, whole grain granola bars and oatmeal-to-go (just make it with milk). Pre-stock the breakfast bowl on the weekend with these items in disposable bags so they are ready to be grabbed.
•Break breakfast boredom by thinking outside the cereal box. Try a ham and cheese sandwich or grapes with cheese cubes and a tall glass of milk.
•Use yogurt to whip up a smoothie or build a parfait for a simple breakfast. You can use fresh, frozen or canned fruit as part of the parfait.
•Mix it up with milk. Use milk to make oatmeal in place of water to boost protein and calcium.
•Chunky monkey English muffin: top a whole wheat English muffin with a tablespoon of chunky peanut butter. Add sliced banana and top with raisins. Serve with a glass of milk.
•Veggie scramble and whole grain toast: Scramble an egg, and toss in a handful of spinach leaves or broccoli to make a fiber-filled scramble. Toast a slice of whole grain bread to serve with it and pour a glass of milk.
•Breakfast bean burrito: Scramble one egg, toss in ¼ cup black beans, and place in the center of a warmed 5-inch whole grain tortilla.
Top with a tablespoon of salsa and ¼ cup shredded cheese. Wrap it up for a high-fiber treat that you can eat on the go.
Ham & Egg Breakfast quesadilla
All you need
•4 large eggs
•3 tablespoons skim milk
•¼ cup chopped green pepper
•1 Roma tomato, diced
•¼ cup spinach, roughly chopped
•2-3 slices of deli ham, chopped
•4 whole wheat tortillas
•¾ cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
All you do
1. Whisk eggs and milk in bowl. Pour into heated skillet and scramble over medium heat until nearly cooked.
2. Add green peppers, tomatoes, spinach and ham. Let heat through and then remove to bowl.
3. Add ¼ of egg mixture to the side of each tortilla, sprinkle 3 tablespoons cheese over top. Fold tortilla in half. Place in heated skillet to melt cheese, then flip. Tortilla should be golden brown and cheese should be melted. Repeat with other tortillas.
Source: Hy-Vee Seasons Back to School 2013
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