Breakfast is definitely the best meal of the day. After a long night it is designed to do exactly what it says - break your fast. After 10-12 hours without eating we need something to get us up and running again. Today there is such a wide range of options on offer it can be hard to know what to choose, however many of the options are high in sugar and refined carbohydrates, which leave us feeling hungry and reaching for more sugar in a couple of hours. This is bad enough for adults, but for children who are still growing and developing it can cause even more problems (1). It can also impact on their ability to learn effectively, concentrate at school and also have a negative impact on their behaviour. So to help your child concentrate, learn effectively and behave well in school give them a different breakfast that will keep them going until lunchtime. The following ideas are quick and easy to make and can be made in the morning or the evening before if it's easier. I hope this gives you some help to give your children a different breakfast in the morning. I would love to hear your ideas for a quick, easy, healthy kids breakfast. 1. Katie Adolphus, Clare L. Lawton, Louise Dye. The effects of breakfast on behavior and academic performance in children and adolescents. Front Hum Neurosci. 2013; 7: 425
Make batch of these on Sunday and keep them in the fridge, Can be eaten cold or warmed in the microwave. You could add grated cheese for some extra flavour and use any finely chopped veg your kids prefer (sweetcorn and peas would also work well).
Quick and easy with a slice of wholegrain toast and butter. The protein in the eggs will keep the kids fuller for longer and the toast will give slow release carbs. Takes less than 10 minutes
The Classic – Boiled Egg
5 minutes to make a perfect dippy egg. You can use your favourite wholegrain toast or asparagus spears to dip into the egg. If you cook them longer then you have the perfect portable breakfast (just add some watercress and baby tomatoes)
Banana Nut Dogs
Great fun. Take a wholewheat tortilla, spread with your favourite nut butter (such as almond, peanut, cashew) and then roll up with a banana in the middle. Takes less than 5 minutes to make, has slow release energy from the wholewheat and bananas and protein and healthy fats from the nut butter.
Prepare the night before, everyone can choose their own if you have enough time. Leave in the fridge and it takes minutes to eat a healthy, nutritious, sustaining breakfast (if anyone in the house follows a dairy free diet then use their favourite dairy substitute). You can choose which fruit you use according to individual tastes, these can also be popped into a leakproof box to be taken to work it you're short of time.
Good at any time of the year, but particularly as the colder mornings set in. Takes 10 minutes to make and can be topped with your favourite fruit, seeds (think sunflower, pumpkin, ground flax) and drizzle of raw honey or maple syrup for a little sweetened. This recipe uses Cinnamon, which is a natural sweetener and helps to maintain good blood sugar balance along with the slow release carbs of the porridge oats. If you add some seeds then you also get some protein to keep everyone fuller for longer and healthy fats (great for good brain health)
Apple nut butter sarnies
Similar to the Banana Nut Dogs, but can be made gluten free. Take some thick apple slices, spread with your choice of nut butter, sprinkle with muesli and put another slice of apple on top (I would probably leave out the chocolate chips for breakfast though!!)