Back to School Snacking: Fighting After-School Hunger

 

It’s that time of year again! Children and families everywhere are preparing to head back to school. Children will be on the move and learning new things each and everyday. After a long day of fun-filled learning, children are more than likely to come home famished. After school snacking is a daily ritual in most homes and this can be a great opportunity to get extra nutrients in your children.

It is also important that we, as parents be a good model to our children when it comes to snacking. If children see how much you enjoy healthy eating and snacks, they are more likely to enjoy these foods as well. Allowing children to help prepare the snacks or other healthy meals will keep them more interested in healthy snacking and eating. With the right foods in the fridge and pantry, children who come straight home after school can start fixing their snacks (with parent approval). Try loading up the refrigerator with easy grab-and-go foods like veggie sticks and low-fat dips, yogurt, and berries.

One recipe for healthy snacking is called Lean Mean Deli Roll-Ups. This is a very quick, easy, and healthy recipe that children can make on their own (with parent approval) or with your help.

Lean Mean Deli Roll-Ups

Makes 1 serving

Ingredients

  1. 1 stick low-fat string cheese
  2. 1 slice lean ham or turkey deli meat
  3. 1 teaspoon honey mustard

Directions

    1. Wash hands and surfaces
    2. Wrap the meat slice around the string cheese stick and dip the roll up in mustard
    3. Refrigerate Immediately

Shae King

Shae is an EFNEP Educator in Forsyth County, NC A&T State University

 

Build an Easy Breakfast

Mornings can be a hectic time to get everyone fed and off to the places we have to be often early in the morning. Breakfast may not always be a top priority. However, breakfast is a very important part of the day for you and everyone in your family. For some ideas, Super Healthy Kids has a list of recipes to help make your mornings a little easier: http://www.superhealthykids.com/10-healthy-breakfasts-help-kids-well-school/

Here are some of the highlights:

However you choose to make breakfast a part of your family’s day, be sure keep it simple!

Emily

Learn benefits of eating together

Family meals help provide regular, consistent opportunities to create shared experiences that are meaningful and offer a sense of belonging to all. Research has shown that regular and meaningful family meals offer a large variety of benefits to children and parents.

Family meals provide a sense of family unity and identity. Family meals become a vehicle for carrying on valued family traditions, such as having a particularly favorite dish on someone’s birthday or going to a favorite place to eat together on special occasions.

Family meals make a positive impact on young children’s language acquisition and literacy development. Family meals furnish a daily opportunity for a parent or sibling to speak to an infant or toddler, and help them learn words, understand language and build a conversation.

Family meals are associated with improved dietary intake among family members. For example, several large studies have shown that regular family meals are strongly associated with increased consumption of fruits, vegetables, grains and other healthy food choices while also linked with lesser consumption of fried or fatty foods, soft drinks or other less healthy food choices.

Click the link under Source to learn more about strengthening family bonds and improving your family’s wellness here:: https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/eatsmart/eat-smart.-play-hard.-magazines-1/2009-eat-smart-play-hard-magazine/test-item

Enjoy!

Neha 

Neha is a Special Projects Assistant for NC EFNEP.



 

Quick and Easy Summer Salad

Summer is the time when I am looking for great recipes to add to my go-to list. My new found Tomatoes, Onion & Cucumber Salad has been on my rotating list for side-dishes for a few months now, and it’s delicious every time I make it.

It tastes great with everything from grilled fish to chicken. You can also add pasta to this and make a great tasting pasta salad for your next picnic or get-together at home.

The salad is best served at room temperature but tastes excellent otherwise as well. I have made the recipe as is but I have also used red onions and cherry tomatoes because that is what I had on hand that day. However, I reduced the amount of red onion because it is bit overpowering for me. You can choose to edit this recipe to match your liking, and I am sure it will taste great.

Here is the recipe in detail for your reference.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 Tablespoons  rice vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper, or more to taste
  • 2 medium cucumber
  • 4 medium tomatoes , cut into 1/2- inch wedges
  • 1 Vidalia onion, or other sweet onion, halved and very thinly sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons coarsely chopped parsley, chives and/or tarragon

DIRECTIONS:

  • Whisk vinegar, oil, honey, salt and pepper in a larger shallow bowl.
  • Slice the cucumbers into thin rounds. Add the cucumber slices, tomatoes, and onion to the dressing; gently toss to combine. Let stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour.

Enjoy!
Neha 

Neha is a Special Programs Assistant for NC EFNEP

Nutrition information:

  • Per serving: 66 calories; 3 g fat(0 g sat); 2 g fiber; 10 g carbohydrates; 2 g protein; 36  mcg folate; 0 mg cholesterol; 7 g sugars; 1 g added sugars; 838 IU vitamin A; 18 mg vitamin C; 31 mg calcium; 1 mg iron; 204 mg sodium; 361 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (30% daily value) 

Source: http://www.eatingwell.com/recipe/250275/summer-tomato-onion-cucumber-salad/

Stress And Diet!

 

Think of all the things you do in a day.  Perhaps feeling tired, irritable, or nauseous can be stress related.  Too much stress without some relief can cause some serious health issues for you now and later in life.  Heart disease and high blood pressure can be a result of being stressed-out.  In you already have been diagnosed with diabetes, stress can worsen it.  Those headaches that you may often get, can be related to stressful situations. How about that depression and/or anxiety you sometimes or often times feel?  Don’t be surprised that chronic stress is also related to more frequent episodes of depression and anxiety.  

I mentioned nausea earlier.  Stress can make ulcers worse, cause heartburn, and even irritable bowel syndrome.  Other culprits of too much stress in your life worsen asthma and Alzheimer’s, interrupt sleep, accelerate aging and even cause premature death.  

So, now that you have realized that you have some of these symptoms, what do you do about it?  Here are some ways you can fight back.  Try breathing deeply, as just a few minutes can calm you.  You don’t need any special equipment or location for this.  You can do this while at work, while driving, cooking, or anytime you start to feel stress taking over.  

Focus on the present.  Don’t get too anxious about what you are going to next or feel guilty about something you may have forgotten to do.  Take some “me” time and perhaps a walk, a stretch, or healthy snack break will bring your focus away from stressful things occurring.

I have found that when I am in traffic, I try use the time as an opportunity to catch up on the news, listen to some soothing music, or listen to an audio book.  It takes my mind off of the traffic and really does lessen the stress.  

Once you begin making some of these changes in your life, look ahead to some bigger changes that can become a new way of life for you.  Start a regular exercise routine, as studies show that this can elevate your moods and give you more energy.  Learn some techniques such as yoga or meditation which will relax you. Not only will you will your mood improve, but the long-term health benefits can be quite significant.

Enjoy!
 Judy 

Source: http://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/how-stress-can-make-us-overeat