You know the feeling… It’s 3:45 pm and you’re feeling like you suddenly fell into an afternoon slump. You’re tired, unproductive, and maybe even sluggish. An afternoon snack is just what you need to energize your mind and body, and push you through the day! The same is true for our kiddos when they get home from school. Their bodies have just used a lot of energy during the school day, and the calories from lunch have started to wear off. It’s time to refuel!
Help your kids make healthy choices when it comes to after school snacks. It is very easy to reach for the fruit snacks, bag of chips, or snack cakes, but a sugar-loaded snack is not the kind of food our bodies are craving. Keep it simple by incorporating fruits, veggies, protein, and whole grains.
The key to keeping snacks healthy is to prepare, prepare, prepare! Make sure you add apples, oranges, grapes, bananas, carrots, peppers, celery, peanut butter, hummus, nuts, and other foods to your grocery list. I find it helpful to prepare my snacks for the week on Sunday night. Use snack or sandwich bags to create appropriately-sized portions of these foods. It’s a huge time-saver to have a snack bag full of almonds already prepared for me to take when I walk out the door on Monday morning. You may find it helpful to chop up fruits and veggies a few times a week and keep them in a drawer in the refrigerator, where your kids can help themselves as they please. It also makes the healthy snacks seem more appealing if they are already prepared at ready to munch on!
- Apples and peanut butter
- Orange slices
- Frozen grapes
- Bowl full of berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries!)
- Peanut butter and bananas on toast
- Baby carrots, peppers, celery, tomatoes, cucumbers and hummus
- Celery and peanut butter (who doesn’t love good ‘ole Ants on a Log?!)
- Almonds, cashews, walnuts, etc.
- Trail mix
- Cheese cubes