breakfast tips and insights feature

How to help kids eat right for breakfast

November 1, 2013 Denise Pinkney

Now that your children have settled into their school routine, it's time to pay a little more attention to breakfast.

This meal is very important because your body has been fasting all night as you sleep and it is ready to break its fast in the morning.  Kids need to get that extra fuel in the morning to help them get through the day. Eating breakfast helps children to concentrate better and score better on tests.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota Wellness Services Team Leader Lori Howard provides these tips for breakfast. She is a licensed, registered dietitian and mother of two children.

  • Offer foods that are rich in fiber, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. For example, celery with peanut butter or veggie omelets are great ways to feed kids vegetables in the morning.
  • Offer a variety of food groups to include protein and healthy fats with breakfast. Fiber, protein and healthy fats provide satiety, slow down digestion and sustain longer in the body.
  • High-fat, high-sugary foods such as doughnuts, pastries and Pop Tarts® tend to digest quickly, making a child feel sluggish or even more tired early on in the morning. But any breakfast is better than no breakfast at all!

"Parents, don't worry if you don't have time for traditional breakfast foods," Lori says. "If you're in a hurry, anything goes. It's OK to offer leftovers such as pizza or hot dish or to serve sandwiches."

Whether you provide pizza, scrambled eggs or a bowl of cereal, eating breakfast helps kids concentrate better and perform better on tests. Help your kids get off to a good start!