Festive For Canada Day!

Tomorrow we celebrate the birthday of our beautiful country, Canada! This year during your Canada Day celebrations surprise your guests by serving some festive healthy snacks. Serving refreshing and satisfying red and white treats will get you some rave reviews. Try some of the delicious recipes below,  it’ll be a hit for the whole gang – young or old!

Have a safe and happy Canada Day!

Try these festive treats!

Strawberry and yogurt pops

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Recipe here: http://chadnbeth.blogspot.ca/2010_04_01_archive.html

Red and White Fruit skewers

Red & White Fruit Skewers

 

 

Recipe here: http://www.homeandgardenblog.com/2013/06/canada-day-recipe-red-white-skewers.html

Goat Cheese Bruschetta

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Recipe here: http://www.yummylaura.com/?p=2994

Janel Genge is a registered dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation Newfoundland and Labrador

 

Carbohydrates 101

Despite what you may have heard in the news, social media and through friends, carbohydrates are a great source of nutrition and are an essential part of your diet. I want to stress the importance of this as more and more people are attempting low-carb diets. This gives our children the impression that carbohydrates are not good for us and the results are we begin to see students avoiding whole grain breads and cereals….something their bodies and their minds need!

Avoiding carbohydrates mean you will lose out on the nutritional benefits of healthy carbohydrate choices such as whole grains, fruits, starchy vegetables and legumes. These foods contain essential vitamins and minerals that everyone must have in their regular diet.  As it relates to your children, their bodies need carbohydrates for energy and optimal brain function and without them academic and physical activities become difficult.

Here are some healthy carbohydrate choices that you should try to eat daily:

  • Whole wheat and multigrain breads
  • Whole grain pitas and tortillas
  • Whole grain pastas and rice….that’s right, pasta!
  • Whole grain cereals such as Multigrain Cheerios and Mini-Wheats
  • Fresh and frozen fruits….yes, even bananas!
  • Fresh and frozen vegetables….yes, even potato!
  • Beans
  • Milk

An example of a healthy lunch with healthy carbohydrates:

Tuna sandwich on whole wheat bread topped with some fresh lettuce, tomato and avocado, a glass of milk to drink and a banana for dessert. It’s a small satisfying lunch that incorporates the four food groups by using healthy carbohydrates, proteins and fats!

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Please continue to enjoy carbohydrates; it’s not always about the amount you eat, but the type you eat!

Janel Genge is a registered dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation Newfoundland and Labrador

Eating Well During Final Exams

In most schools throughout the province final exams have started…and so have the long nights of studying, worry and stressing about them. With so much on their minds, students often don’t take the time to eat regular meals or in some cases eat at all when studying for final exams. To keep the mind fueled and the body energized we must stress the importance of eating well during exam time.

In order for students to eat well during exam time most want something quick that they can grab and eat while they study or head out to meet up with some friends for a study date. Offer some of the healthy quick choices below to ensure your children are getting the nutrition their body requires during exam time:

  • Cold sandwiches – add a protein (chicken, roast beef, tuna, egg) and some other nutritious toppings such as lettuce, tomato, avocado and cheese.
  • Warm wraps or pitas – add some chicken or beef and top with peppers, lettuce, tomato and cheese.
  • Fruit and yogurt parfait cups – for some extra nutrition use a Greek yogurt and sprinkle on some granola and almonds.
  • Mix veggies – pack up some fresh raw veggies with a side of ranch dip for a quick snack at the library
  • Always have some quick snacks on hand such as granola bars, crackers and cheese, whole grain muffins with berries, yogurt cups, trail mix, bottle water and other nutritious quick snacks.

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We are wishing all students good luck with their exams. Remember Good Eating = Good Thinking!

Janel Genge is a registered dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation Newfoundland and Labrador

Cleaning out the Cupboards!

As the school year is drawing to a close, it’s important that our Kids Eat Smart Clubs continue until school is officially dismissed. We want students to have access to a healthy meal each day they attend school. That being said, we want to ask our wonderful volunteers to practice smart shopping and only buy what is needed for the week. We want to make sure food isn’t wasted and left to spoil when school is over. Please, use the food you have and purchase only what you need!

Here are some suggestions that can help you use the foods you have left in your KES Club:

  • If you have lots of cereal on hand, prepare some small baggies of mixed cereal for those children who don’t want to eat their cereal with milk. Junior High and High school students will love this to munch on while they do some last minute studying before they head to their classrooms to write their exams.
  • If you have lots of fruit (fresh or frozen) make some smoothies by adding some of the extra milk, yogurt or juice you have on hand as well.
  • During the very last week of school provide your students with grab-and-go options as it’s much easier to buy smaller amount of foods and are usually used quicker. Set this up where all students can see it when they walk through the school doors, they are more likely to avail of it then.

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We hope that everyone can try to use the food they have before the year is out. Some things may be stored until next year while other foods will be expired. Check the dates to ensure safe storage.

Enjoy the last 2 weeks of your KES Club for the 2013-2014 school year!!

Janel Genge is a registered dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation Newfoundland and Labrador

Partnering for Health!

Kids Eat Smart Foundation is a registered charity that works to provide children throughout the province with access to nutritious food so they may attend school well nourished and ready to learn. We depend on National, Provincial and community partners for funding. Every day we serve over 22,000 meals to school aged children in this province and without the support of our partners this would not be possible. The generous contribution given to KES by our partners ensures our children start their days with access to nutritious food.

The benefit of nutritious food on children’s overall health and their ability to learn when they eat healthy food is very well documented. Educators in our province share their observations with us regarding their KES Clubs in that they see a positive change in attendance, children appear happier and more engaged and they observe improved social interaction amongst peers.

The funds provided to our 232 KES Clubs allow them to serve fruit, vegetables, milk and a variety of other nutritious foods every day. Good nutrition is vital in aiding children with growth and development, helping them concentrate while learning and be more attentive.

We want to thank all of our partners who have given so generously to Kids Eat Smart Foundation, on behalf of our children….THANK YOU!

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Janel Genge is a registered dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation Newfoundland and Labrador

Treats on a Stick!

Creating new menu ideas and choices for children will encourage them to try more foods and in turn teach them to like a greater variety. Adding something new and creative to your regular menu can also create excitement among children….they love to see new creative ideas!!

These Cheerio Frozen Bananas are sure to be a great hit. They’re not only delicious and nutritious, but on that one little stick you will be serving 3 out of the 4 food groups; grains, fruit and dairy!! It’s easier than we think to incorporate the 4 food groups into our daily diet. Try this delicious snack for your children:

Cheerio Frozen Bananas

Ingredients

  • Strawberry or strawberry banana yogurt
  • Multigrain Cheerios
  • Firm ripe bananas
  • Wooden sticks (flat with round ends are preferred)

Directions

Line cookie sheet with waxed paper. In shallow dish, place yogurt. In another shallow dish, place cereal. Peel bananas; cut each banana crosswise in half. Insert wooden stick into cut end of each banana half. Roll each banana half in yogurt, then in cereal to coat. Place on cookie sheet. Freeze about 1 hour or until firm. Wrap each banana in plastic wrap or foil. Store in freezer.  Serve and enjoy!

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Recipe adapted from: http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/cheerios-frozen-bananas/4cf1fcbe-e623-411c-9be9-6d955f86e8f7

Janel Genge is a registered dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation Newfoundland and Labrador