The health benefits of following a Mediterranean diet are well-established. A Mediterranean diet includes whole-grains, up to nine servings of fruits and vegetables daily, consumption of fish and chicken while limiting red meat, and restricting intake of unhealthy fats. It is good for the heart and has been proven to reduce the risk of diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.
Getting the kids up and out the door in the morning can be challenging enough. How do you implement healthy breakfast ideas for toddlers and older children?
If your little one is still in the process of teething or learning to eat solid food there are still healthy baby breakfast ideas for your 6-, 10-, or 12-month-old baby. It is recommended that baby’s oatmeal always be prepared with whole milk. Babies can also be served Cheerios plain or soaked in applesauce. Baby’s meal can be sweetened with molasses or maple syrup. It is not recommended that children under one year be given honey due to risk of infection from botulism spores.
Here are ten breakfast ideas for kids.
Yogurt is a healthy way to start the day. Be cautious of high-processed yogurts that contain lots of sugar. Instead mix fresh fruit such as blueberries, strawberries, or peaches into a cup of yogurt. The best-for-you yogurt contains acidophilus–an active or “live” bacteria culture.
Steel-cut or whole-grain oatmeal has proven healthy-heart benefits as well as adding fiber to your child’s diet. Oatmeal can be prepared with water, milk or soymilk. Instant flavored oatmeal often contains a great deal of processed sugar. For added sweetness try adding dried fruit, fresh fruit or maple syrup.
A fruit smoothie blended with fruit such as bananas, berries or peaches can be eaten on the go. Blend with milk, soymilk, liquid yogurt or fruit juice and serve with a straw.
A whole-grain bagel topped with peanut butter or fruit spread makes for a tasty and convenient breakfast for an active child.
The incredible edible egg is one of the few things in life that lives up to its hype. Eggs are high in protein, low in unhealthy fats, and high in vitamins A, D, and E. They can be prepared soft or hard-boiled, fried, over-easy, and scrambled.
French toast made with whole-grain toast dipped in whisked egg is bound to be a sure-fire favorite. Pan fry with PAM or another healthy oil and serve with a small container of syrup, applesauce or honey for dipping.
A breakfast pizza can be prepared from refrigerated pizza dough and topped with scrambled eggs, turkey sausage and shredded cheese.
Whole-grain breakfast bars are a fast, easy breakfast option.
Fresh fruit can be mixed into cottage cheese for a tasty treat and served with turkey bacon for some added protein.
Finally, Cheerios or other whole -grain cereal served with milk is a proven favorite with even the fussiest eater.