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How to keep kids cool in the summer months
Being a parent of young children, you’ll know the worry of trying to keep them cool and hydrated throughout the hotter summer months.
Here are winning tips to make it that little bit easier for you whilst making it fun (and nutritional) for the kids on how to keep kids cool over the summer months.
Keeping Kids Cool During Summer Months – Who’s the King of Ice Lollies?
If your kids are like ours then they’ll love an ice lolly. I mean what’s more refreshing than ice?
Both young and older children adore playing games with it too.
Flavoured ice on a hot summer’s day? Yes, please!
However, we know that lollies from the supermarket can be high in unnecessary sugar and food colourings. Perfectly okay if you are on a family holiday but could be tricky as a daily option to stay cool over the entire summer months.
The solution? Why not make your own and give these simple ice lolly ideas a go instead? These recipe ideas are easy to make and nutritionally gentler for added sugars than what you’ll find in the shop bought treats.
Summer is here and we all know how deliciously refreshing watermelon is but by adding a lolly stick and freezing the slices, we guarantee the kids will find it more of a treat.
Think of your child’s favourite smoothie…now, take an ice lolly mould and freeze it. Voila! You now have the perfect ice lolly for your little one. Stuck for ideas? Don’t worry I’ve got you covered and some even contain veggies!
Banana, avocado, cacao powder, milk (or dairy-free alternative)
Frozen berries, oats, milk (or dairy-free alternative)
Mango, passionfruit, orange & ice
Kiwi, Spinach, lime, chia seeds & apple juice
Peanut butter, banana & yoghurt (or dairy-free alternative)
Whole Fruit Lollies
Get creative with your child to beat the summer heat, by adding whole berries or sliced fruit to the ice lolly mould.
Next top up with water, yoghurt, sugar-free squash or fresh juice.
This is a fun way to introduce your child to new fruits or ones that they might be unsure about.
Summer months tips: how to get kids to drink more water!
For great ideas from other dietitian mums, read the blog post for 7 tried and tested ways to get your toddler to drink water.
Water can be highly underrated by children, especially if they prefer the taste of sweetened drinks.
It can be seem a little boring, but it doesn’t have to be. Encourage them to want to drink more water by jazzing up their water just like you would your gin and tonic or favourite summer cocktail – use plenty of fruit!
Slices of oranges, lemons, limes, cucumber and frozen berries can work a treat.
Even herbs like mint, basil and rosemary are all great ways to add flavour and colour to their water, as well as ice to keep it cool.
If you grow your own herbs and vegetables, here’s a great way to use them.
Google ‘kids ice cube moulds’ and there are plenty of fantastic trays available online.
We hope that this has given you some ideas on how to make it easier to keep your children cool and hydrated over the summer months and that they love it too!
What did your kids enjoy the most? Leave a comment in the box below.
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Today’s post was contributed by The Nutrinerds. Edited and approved by Bahee Van de Bor, registered paediatric dietitian.
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The post How to Keep Kids Cool in the Summer Months appeared first on UK Kids Nutrition.
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Ten healthy snacks for kidsIf you need help choosing healthy snacks for kids then you’ve come to the right place.Regardless of whether your child is a toddler or a teenager, much to my dismay no one believes me when I recommend fruit or a bit of yoghurt as healthy snacks for kids.You may be looking for healthy snacks either because you are worried that your child is overweight or because they tell you that they are constantly hungry over the school holidays!Planning the snacks for kids pays off for everyone. The children know in advance what’s on offer and parents can relax knowing that the pantries are stocked with healthy snacks for the kids.Here are my suggestions for ten healthy snacks for the kids that are quick and easy to make.
FruitI know that looking after your child’s health is fundamental as a parent. There can be uncertainty about what to offer children as a healthy snack but fruit really is one of the perfect options.It’s a source of fibre helping to keep their bellies full whilst topping up their daily dose of vitamins and minerals. Don’t forget that fibre is also important to feed the trillions of microbes that live in your child’s gastrointestinal tract. During the early years, your child’s microbiome continues to develop so make sure that they get enough fibre to feed the good bacteria that live and grow in their gut.Children need to eat at least two servings of fruit a day as part of their Five-A-Day portions. Keep the fruit bowl full so that they can help themselves when hungry in-between meals. Fruit should always be one of the first things that they reach for when hungry and is also a perfect toddler snack.By teaching them this healthy eating habit, they’ll continue to eat fruit as a snack through-out their life. If you need to make it a little more exciting, why not serve watermelon slices or fruit salads with chopped mint through this? It really only takes less than five minutes to chop up a couple of pieces of fruit and herbs.For school why not invest in one of those trendy and fun looking fruit shaped storage boxes that can be attached to a key ring? These will help prevent bananas and apples from getting bruised in the school bag.
Rice cakesI especially like Biona organic rice cakes with amaranth. Rice cakes generally provide around 3g fibre per 100g but this particular type provides 4.2g per 100g.At home, these would be perfect with a thin smear of nut butter but for school, why not slap on hummus, Vegemite or serve it on it’s own? These are all appropriate for children following a vegan, vegetarian or milk free diet.These rice cakes also provide a decent amount of protein due to the presence of Amaranth which is an ancient grain that is naturally gluten free. Like quinoa it also contains the full sequence of essential amino acids.
Corn thinsAs a variation to rice cakes, these provide at least 7-10g of fibre per 100g making it a high fibre healthy snack for kids.Serve on its own or at home you could prepare a fish based sandwich filler like this smoked salmon rillete in the article “12 child friendly fish recipes to delight”.
Sliced seasonal vegetablesDuring the summer sweet cherry tomatoes, carrots, bell peppers and corn are all in season. They are perfect sliced and can be dipped into a selection of dips prepared from beans or beautiful purple beets to make hummus like dips.If your child is not following a dairy free diet then you can offer a portion of cream cheese. Some children may enjoy eating these raw and on it’s own.When you pop these into your child’s lunch boxes they make great snacks for kids.You can try sending them with the sliced vegetables daily for at least two weeks before they will cave in and eat them when hungry. Mix up the colours of the vegetables so they look visually appealing too.
YoghurtA source of protein and calcium yoghurt is useful particular as a toddler snack.Some varieties (particularly milk free yoghurts) can be high in sugar so it’s a good idea to learn how to screen nutrition labels for these.I recommend reading “How To Choose The Best Children’s Yoghurt”.
A few simple tips for transporting yoghurt is to freeze it first so that the pottle thaws out in children’s lunch boxes during the warmer days.If you are sending them with sliced fruit and vegetables in their lunch boxes then the frozen yoghurts could keep these cool.If your child’s preferred brand is higher in sugar, try not to worry too much about this. Balance the rest of their snacks using the nutritious choices listed in this article of healthy snacks for kids that are quick and easy.
Home made mixed fruit bread rollsYou can buy commercially made easter buns or bread rolls but if you are prepared to invest a little bit of time baking with the kids, you’ll be rewarded with a supply of delicious home baked fruit bread rolls that the kids will love!I’ve prepared these fruit bread rolls in a variety of ways using a different combination of dried fruit, nuts and seeds.I especially loved using part spelt flour instead of strong white bread flour mixed with wholemeal flour which resulted in very soft textured bread rolls.Spelt is fabulous as it is another grain that is high in fibre (> 7g per 100g). The sweet and nutty spelt flour that I used was lower providing only 4.7g fibre per 100g but provided higher levels compared to standard self-raising flour. Wholemeal flour by far provides the highest proportion of fibre by up to 10g per 100g. Fibre is important for hungry bellies as it helps fill them up and keeps them full for longer.Home baking also helps minimise their intake of any added preservatives and additives. It’s a great activity with the kids during the weekends. Get them to help you shape the dough into circular dough balls ready for baking in a hot oven.
A family favourite kids love popcorn!You can prepare these at home and store in air tight containers.This recipe is for wild rosemary popcorn which makes a delicious change.Corn kernels are also incredibly budget friendly and is available all year round. Just be mindful of how much oil and salt is added when preparing it.Apart from this, it’s a delicious source of fibre and a bowl can be happily shared amongst friends after school or if added in your child’s lunch box.
Homemade flap jackPublic Health England have recommended that children reduce their intake of added sugars. Although breakfast cereals and sweetened drinks are one of the biggest sources of added sugar in children’s diets, baking can be another.If your child enjoys the taste of sweetened foods then don’t despair. They don’t need to completely give up sweetened foods.Instead, I would encourage you to bake together so that you can control the overall amount of added sugars.This milk free fig and dark chocolate flapjack is a strong contender but I’ll be honest, it does contain a fair amount of sugar. You could try reducing the brown sugar by half and try adding a banana instead to sweeten naturally.The final recipe should then be lower in added sugars. Alternatively, keep the portion sizes small and try not to make this the hero snack. Offer it with fruit, sliced vegetables and any of the other healthy snack options described in this post.
Sugar guideDo you want to learn more about how to identify and reduce the amount of added sugar in your child’s diet?Join the FREE five day challenge where you will receive an email a day with tips and advice. This challenge will remain free for a short time only, so do join by clicking on the image below and follow the instructions to subscribe for free.
Wholegrain toastThe humble toast often gets overlooked but is a brilliant snack. It’s a smart carbohydrate providing the right sources of energy from carbohydrates, fibre and when topped with protein like hummus or similar dips prepared using tahini can be a filling and nutritious mini meal.For children who are not following a vegan or vegetarian diet, you could consider using eggs or fish like tinned tuna to prepare an open sandwich.For an after school snack, a nut butter that has been oven roasted in its skin without added oil is perfect over toast.
Savoury mini muffinsAs another opportunity to bake with your children, why not whip up savoury muffins using the mini muffin hole trays as a healthy snack for kids?You can choose from a variety of fillings such as sun-dried tomatoes, green peas, beans, tofu, sweet corn, grated courgette or carrots and so on. If you need a dairy free muffin, skip the cheese but use fresh herbs for delicious flavours.For egg free baking, flax eggs prepared using ground flax seeds will do the trick. Soy or oat based yoghurt and creme fraiche could be used to replace cheese and yoghurt in recipes.Have you got a recipe to share?
Roasted chickpeas or green lentilsA fabulous nut free crunchy healthy snack option for kids.Experiment with different spices at home to sprinkle over the chickpeas before roasting in the oven. Suggested spicesmild curry powdergaram masalaturmericground cumin Make sure that the chickpeas or green lentils are thoroughly cooked then dried before coating in oil and any of the spices described above.After tossing well to coat evenly with the spices, spread it out on a baking tray and roast in a hot oven for up to 40 minutes.Due to the risk of choking you may wish to avoid these for children under the age of five years.
Did you enjoy today’s post on ten healthy snacks for kids that are quick and easy? Don’t forget to listen to the podcast episode by clicking play on the media player below. You can also subscribe to the show by or on your favourite music listening app. Let Me HelpWould you like to meet a children’s dietitian who has successfully helped families solve their nutrition problems from around the world?Whether you are worried about picky eating, food allergy or need to help your child build a healthy relationship with food, I’ll help you manage these with confidence.For bookings and enquiries email me on firstname.lastname@example.org or book a free 15 minute call to discuss how I can help you at one of my London clinics.
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