Breakfast is often the hardest meal for parents to get their children to eat. We have always heard that it’s “The most important meal of the day,” but is it really that important for you? According to numerous studies on child development and health, the answer is yes.
Why is breakfast so important?
Breakfast is important for healthy growth because it’s the fuel that your child’s mind and body needs.
Energy in the morning will help your child stay attentive and alert during school or play. Without breakfast, your child might doze off or get distracted during class. Ensuring they eat well before heading out the door can keep your child positive and prepared for their entire day.
Breakfast is good for keeping your child’s metabolism running smoothly too. Eating at the same time every morning can improve their metabolism. This can help your child stay in shape, decrease the chances of developing heart disease and keep them active.
Also, certain nutrients like fiber and healthy fats found in common breakfast foods act as brain boosters for your child! The brain needs fuel to perform and develop properly, just like any other organ in the body. Eating the right foods in the morning can improve memory and concentration for the day and keep your child’s brain developing.
What to eat for breakfast
Sometimes, it can be difficult to get your child to eat in the morning. Whether they’re not hungry or they just don’t know what they want to eat, it’s still important for your child to have breakfast every day. The best way to get them to eat is to start preparing something nutritious.
The most important nutrients for childhood development are complex carbohydrates, protein, healthy fats and fiber. Here are a few examples of where to find them and what they do:
Complex Carbohydrates: Whole grains like brown rice or wheat fill our stomachs up with less calories than those that are found in white bread.
Protein: Lean protein from turkey, nuts or egg whites is great for muscle growth and repair.
Healthy Fats: These come from fish oil and some fruits like avocado, and are good for brain function.
Fiber: Eating vegetables and fruits that have skins will help the body flush out toxins.
Make breakfast exciting, but healthy
Some children don’t like breakfast foods, and others get queasy at the thought of eating so early. To get your child to eat in the morning, try thinking outside the box!
Do they want spaghetti and meatballs? Use brown rice pasta with turkey meatballs. How about a burrito? Wrap some chicken breast and avocado with black beans in a corn or wheat tortilla. Does your child like smoothies? Put strawberries and bananas in a blender with ice and a scoop of natural peanut butter.
You can prepare any of these nutritious breakfasts the night before or with your child in the morning. Changing up the menu, but keeping the healthy nutrients, can make breakfast an exciting start to the day for your child and ensure healthy all-around development!
How Prep Feels About Fueling Growth
At Prep Academy Schools, we are passionate about the overall development of each of our students. Our goal is to help children reach their full physical and academic potential at every point in the day, which begins with a nutritious breakfast that fuels fun and growth!