March is National Nutrition Month, when the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics reminds everyone to return to the basics of healthy eating. It is also the time of year when the Academy celebrates expertise of registered dietitian nutritionists as the food and nutrition experts.
We all experience "morning madness" — whether it's a time crunch, a picky eater or lack of appetite in the morning, many things can keep you from making it out the front door on time. The good news is that healthy breakfast options are available for no matter what morning hurdles you face.
Quick Breakfast Fix: Running low on time? Here are speedy breakfast ideas to get you and your family out the door and ready for your day.
- Mix low-fat yogurt with whole-grain cereal, and serve with a glass of orange juice.
- Blend low-fat milk, frozen strawberries and a banana for a 30-second smoothie to enjoy with a bran muffin.
- Add dried cranberries and almonds to quick-cooking oatmeal.
Picky Eater: Do your children demand certain foods every morning? You can make subtle changes to give their traditional breakfasts a nutritional boost.
- Doughnuts: Offer whole-grain toaster waffles with reduced-sugar syrup. If doughnuts are on the menu, consider serving the smaller option of doughnut holes and add other food groups such as low-fat milk and fruit to ensure some extra nutrition to get you through the day.
- Bacon: Switch to Canadian and turkey bacon, which is much lower in fat than regular bacon.
- Toast with peanut butter: Use whole-grain toast to boost fiber and use peanut butter instead of butter or jam. Add a glass of low-fat milk or orange juice.
- Sugary cereals: Substitute low-sugar, whole-grain cereals and berries.
Lack of Appetite: Many kids complain that they just don't feel like eating when they get up. If this is true for your child, here are some things you can do:
- Spread it out: Have your child eat a piece of fruit and drink a glass of low-fat milk before they leave the house. Then, on the bus, they can eat an oatmeal muffin or a low-sugar breakfast cereal bar.
- Eat breakfast at school: Many schools serve a variety of nutritious breakfasts for kids. Encourage your children to take advantage of these options if available.
- Be a role model and eat breakfast: If your child sees you making time to eat a healthy meal, he or she will follow your good example.