Make Breakfast a Habit
Parents are important role models for helping children develop good breakfast-eating habits.
The benefits of eating breakfast outweigh the challenges.
Involve children in selecting breakfast foods.
Plan your breakfast the evening before, set the table, and prepare ingredients, if possible.
Breakfast is essential to the nutritional health of children. A morning meal helps assure optimal development and growth. A balanced breakfast supports
improved alertness, attention, and academic performance. A regular breakfast habit may decrease the risk of being overweight.
What’s For Breakfast?
Whole grains are a good source of fiber. Children need between 20-30 grams of fiber per day. Aim for at least 5 grams of fiber at breakfast. Fiber helps to promote regularity and prevent constipation and it helps prevent cancer and heart disease later in life. Whole grains include oatmeal, barley, brown rice cereals, buckwheat, whole cornmeal, millet, whole wheat, and others. Serve whole grain breakfast cereals, pancakes, and waffles. Use whole wheat bagels, breads, tortillas, and pita pockets.
Most school-age children need 3 servings per day of milk, yogurt, or cheese. Serve a glass of low-fat, fat-free, or soy milk with breakfast.
Prepare a breakfast parfait with fruit and yogurt.
Include a good source of protein for a more satisfying, longer lasting, and nutritionally balanced breakfast rather than an all-carbohydrate meal.
Choose eggs, nuts, cheese, or beans for appealing sources of protein at breakfast. Hard-cooked eggs or cheese sticks are good choices for grab-and-go meals.
Add nuts to hot or cold cereal for added protein. Add flavorful beans to an omelet filling.
Add a fruit to breakfast to get a head start on meeting daily fruit requirements. One hundred percent juice is an easy way to help reach that goal. Whole fruits and vegetables offer more fiber than juice. Serve a warmed fruit sauce on buckwheat pancakes or whole grain French toast. Add dried fruits, such as cherries, cranberries, or apples, to hot cereal.
Consider adding your child’s favorite vegetable to an omelet or frittata. Serve carrots or celery with peanut butter for a different breakfast option.
The egg is a nutrient rich food Howard Helmer’s 40-Second Omelet because it provides a wide range of nutrients in proportion to its calorie count (about 75 calories
per large egg). Eggs are an excellent source of choline and good source of high-quality protein, vitamin B12, and riboflavin.
Almost any food can fill an omelet, including cheese, ham, broccoli, and tomatoes. Use one or more filling ingredients to total about 1 ⁄3 to 1 ⁄2 cup for each omelet. Flavor the omelet or filling with about 1 ⁄8 to 1 ⁄4 teaspoon of your favorite herb, spice, or seasoning blend. Fill an omelet right after you’ve finished cooking it. At this point, the omelet
will be hot enough to melt cheese and warm filling