The Mystery of Healthy Snacks - Solved!

43-healthy-after-school-snacks-teensTeenagers need their after school snack to hold them until dinner time. Most teens have a packed schedule and the boost of energy provided by an after school snack can get them over the hump until it is time to eat a full meal again. Studies show that frequent small snacks are actually a healthier way to maintain a constant blood sugar level eating a few big meals which cause the sugar levels to spike and then drop.

Consistently fed, a teen will be much more capable of focusing on the task or activity at hand. But though the idea of the snack is healthy, it is also important that the snack itself be healthy, too.

How Do You Get Them to Eat Healthy Snacks?

Persuading your teen to eat healthy snacks after school can be challenging. Not only does your child have a mind of their own, but by this point, they are often independent enough to by fixing (and sometimes buying) their own snacks when they want them. Since a hungry after school snacker will often take the path of least resistance, your teen's moment between meals might consist of anything tasty and easy.

Do not despair, however, this can work to your advantage. All you need to do is provide a kitchen filled with healthy and attractive snacks for the whole family to enjoy. This will encourage your teen to reach for the option that you provide, rather than hunt down a candy bar or a bag of chips.

Here are some suggestions for tasty, filling, and fueling after school snacks that are sophisticated enough for your teen:

* Home made granola - Making your own granola allows you to tailor the taste to your family's preferences and provide sweet, salty, and wholesome grains in one snack.
* Light or unbuttered microwave popcorn - Popcorn is quick and easy to make and without the additives it makes a filling snack.
* Veggies and dip - Make the dip something that your children really like and watch the vegetables you serve with it disappear.
* Fruit parfait - This makes a simple and yet elegant looking snack to welcome your child home from school.
* Frozen grapes - These fruits are a super sweet and natural bite sized dessert.
* Mixed nuts  -Nuts provide a quick shot of tasty but necessary protein.
* Fruit smoothies - You can fill a smoothie with all sorts of vitamins and minerals, but it still takes like dessert to most of us.
* Pita bread and hummus - A tasty and filling option that offers all the nutrients you need between meals.

These are only a few suggestions. You can easily think of more once you set your mind to it. Remember that the goal is not to forbid foods that have less nutritional value, but to present your teen with healthy options. Still, you don't need to keep tempting food in the house either. When you and the family want a treat it is easy enough to go out and get it. This will save the whole family from conveniently eating all sorts of empty nutrition.

You might also find the following helpful:

Children's BMI Chart

School Lunch Ideas

Fitness for Kids

Child Fever Basics

Picky Eaters 101





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