In our children’s growing years, it’s critical to lay a cornerstone of optimal nutrition and balanced eating habits. However, in today’s hectic environment, putting what we know into reality can be challenging. With their hectic schedules, it’s not shocking to see parents offering their children a packet of chicken rice from a local hawker center or a McDonald’s Happy Meal at mealtimes.
Let’s learn how to prepare simple and healthy meals and snacks for your child. You can use these ideas to help your kids develop better food habits so they can get the foods and vitamins they need to grow up big and balanced!
What makes a healthy meal?
- Diversity and balance: Include foods from the Rice and Alternatives, Fruit and Vegetables, and Meat and Alternatives food classes in your menu.
- Limit saturated fats: A certain amount of fat is beneficial. However, too much fat, particularly saturated and trans fats, can lead to weight gain and a variety of health issues.
- Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables: High in vitamins, nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants, fruits and vegetables are great for your growing child.
- Wholegrains are the way to go: Compared to processed grains, whole grains contain more vitamins, nutrients, and fiber.
- Calcium is good for you. Calcium is a crucial component in the formation of solid and stable bones and teeth.
- Keep sugar in check: Added sugar is known as “empty calories” because it has no nutrients.
Based on the pointers above, let us explore some ideas for meal times with your child.
- Cereal with fruit and yogurt
- Peanut butter and jam toast with milk
- Tuna sandwich
- Eggs (scrambled or boiled) with toast
* Pro-tip: Keep some hard-boiled eggs on hand for an easy source of protein at breakfast!
- Cut fruits
- Fruit yogurt
- Fruit smoothie
- Convenient cheese slices
- Steamed vegetables with rice or porridge
- Chicken and egg fried rice
- Macaroni soup
- Baked salmon
- Steamed vegetables
- Shredded baked chicken
- Spaghetti Bolognese
Meal planning for your child can be a daunting experience, but don’t be ashamed to ask for assistance. These fast meal plans will get your kids to consume more vegetables and eat a healthy meal while keeping it straightforward for you!