Feeding Busy Kids
Some kids are just born on the move and some just have an incredible metabolism and are constantly saying those three words we don’t always love to hear…
“Mum I’m hungry”
As a Mum of a very busy boy with ADHD, I’m always looking for ways to power pack healthy fats and nutrients into our son to fill him up and help with his growth and development.
I’ve learnt that good fats are super important to help regulate and calm their nervous systems and also satisfy their hunger for longer.
Cravings are often our bodies telling us that we need certain nutrients so it’s important to focus on nutrient-dense options to meet the needs of their growing bodies and avoid processed foods with empty calories that generally just fuels their hunger and desire for more junk as ‘like attracts like.’
If your kids have hollow legs or are always so busy at school and don’t eat, try some of these tips that I’ve learnt from the Naked Health Challenge:
Book end their day.
- If you start the day with a super nutritious breakfast and end the day with a whole food dinner it won’t matter as much what they get in the middle of the day.
Power pack breakfast with as much nutrition as possible.
- Think soaked oats or porridge loaded with any nuts, nut butter, seeds and superfoods that they like. You can even add in a good quality protein powder.
- If they run off before they have finished, pop it all in a smoothie. Smoothies are also a great option for after school or dessert.
- Some other great breakfast options are eggs, toast and beans (don’t be shy with good quality organic butter) and protein pancakes.
- Add nut butter or coconut oil where ever you can in porridge, on toast or smoothies.
- Avocado is great on crackers, as a dip, on toast or sandwiches etc
- Protein balls/cookies, NHC brownies and nuts are great nutrients and calorie-dense ways to get something into them after school. Check out our recipe for our sweet potato brownies. (Paleo GF Healthy Sweet Potato Brownies)
- Stick with big chunks of food. Anything chopped too and fiddly takes too long to eat. So with veggies pop in a whole carrot, mini cucumbers or a quarter of red pepper instead of cutting into small strips
Eat in their down time
- If they haven’t touched their lunch box try giving it to them in the car whilst they don’t have the option to be distracted and running off
- If they are watching a show and asking for food whilst you are still preparing dinner give them veggies and nuts to nibble on.
Simple wholefood dinners
- To avoid kids not eating dinner because of picky eating, keep it simple with a selection of whole foods like protein, veggies and rice or potatoes that they can choose.
- Kids love feeling in control and having a choice so serving up a buffet of healthy food in the middle of the table with tongs empowers them to take what they want. If we serve up dinner like this they will tend to eat lots more veggies than if we serve up individual portions.
Make health foods fun
Making foods together often gives them more buy-in, in wanting to taste and eat the food.
My busy boy isn’t patient enough to go through the whole process of making bliss balls, protein biscuits etc but I often prepare the mix and he enjoys the sensory process of rolling the balls or cutting out biscuits and loves eating something he has helped prepare.
Check out our article about making healthy swaps for some other ideas on how to swap out processed food for more nutrient-dense alternatives.
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