School is back in session, and with all the running around your kids do in a day, how do you keep their energy up? Depending on what they eat and drink, an after-school snack can give active kids the energy they need to support their physical activity and achieve better mental concentration. Here are some pointers to keep in mind when deciding what choices to make for healthy after-school snacks.
How to Plan for After-School Snacks
#1. Stock your refrigerator and pantry with healthy after-school snacks that consist of protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats. Foods like hummus or apples with peanut butter will help sustain your child’s energy and prevent those cranky sugar crashes. You also want to avoid serving big portions or snacks with a higher caloric content, because they can spoil a child’s appetite for dinner. Choose water as the best beverage to pair with their snack.
#2. Try to have nutritious snacks, like cut-up fruits and veggies, granola, trail mix, and yogurts on hand, pre-portioned, and ready to go. It’ll make it easy for your kids to grab and eat before homework or after-school activities. This also will relieve some of the prep-time stress while you focus on making dinner.
#3. It’s not always what you eat, but how you eat. Consider timing in between meals when determining when and how much your child should eat. When is your kiddo’s lunchtime? How much did they eat at lunch? Have they eaten since lunch? Did they have a highly active day? This will help you figure out how hungry your kids might be when they get home.
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