Top 10 Healthy Summer Foods for Children
Can kids eat healthfully, yet still enjoy their favorite summer foods?
4. Top Summer Food: Frozen Yogurt
Frozen yogurt sounds healthier than ice cream -- or maybe not. "You have to read food labels to see," says Krieger. "Some have more sugar than low-fat ice cream. Others are the equivalent of sherbet. It can be tricky."
With desserts, you don't want to go for empty calories -- and that's where frozen yogurt fits in, says Bonnie Taub-Dix, MA, RD, a New York City dietitian and also an ADA spokeswoman. "Go for foods that are valuable and taste good at the same time."
- How about frozen yogurt pie? Crunch up graham crackers (or buy a graham cracker pie shell), spoon frozen yogurt into it, top with fresh strawberries or raspberries, then freeze.
- Fruit and yogurt parfait, topped with granola, is another easy dessert. Or, spoon frozen yogurt between two low-fat cookies. You could also make a smoothie, using fresh blueberries, grapes, and strawberries.
5. Top Summer Food: Waffles & Pancakes
This classic breakfast food is fun for kids. It's made easier with frozen, whole grain, reduced-fat products. The toppings boost the nutrition: natural applesauce, blueberries, sliced banana and strawberries, and a little light syrup, Zied suggests.
- Another classic: Scrambled eggs mixed with low-fat shredded cheddar, tomatoes, asparagus, mushrooms (or whatever veggies your kids like).
- Scrambled-eggs-in-a-cup: Take a slice of whole wheat bread, break it up into a cup, top with the cooked egg mixture. You're good to go!
6. Top Summer Food: Marshmallows
What's cool about marshmallows? "Even kids with food allergies can eat them," Krieger says. "Give one to a child who can't eat a chocolate chip cookie and you're sure to get a smile."
- Four large marshmallows have 90 calories -- mostly sugar. To give 'em a nutrition boost, try skewering marshmallows with strawberries and other fruit.
- Of course, toasted marshmallows and S'mores are American standards. If your kids haven't discovered these classic treats, it's time! Just toast a marshmallow over a grill or campfire, place it over a chunk of chocolate. Put it between two graham crackers (a good source of whole grains).
7. Top Summer Food: Popcorn