A number of studies have highlighted the benefits of a good nutritious breakfast for students. Unfortunately, however, many young ones have the tendency of skipping this important first meal. Students should have a complete and healthy breakfast on a daily basis.
Almost all of us have heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Yet, not many take it seriously and make breakfast a part of their daily diet. Just like adults, these days, skipping breakfast has become a common practice among school-going children too.
As parents and caregivers, it is your responsibility to provide kids with a healthy breakfast. Many students refuse to eat breakfast before going to school, citing reasons such as lack of time, not feeling hungry, etc. However, they do not realize that not having breakfast actually hampers their health, and can cause various learning problems too.
To prevent such issues, it is necessary that students develop the habit of eating breakfast daily. Rather than forcing children, it is better if we make them understand the benefits of a good breakfast, so that the automatically start having it. In the following lines we highlight the several benefits that eating a healthy breakfast has and also present you with a few tips for preparing not just a healthy but a tasty breakfast for your little ones.
Breakfast Like a King
The importance of breakfast lies in the word itself. By eating breakfast, we are actually breaking the fast that was induced during the long gap after dinner the previous night, when we were asleep. By the time we wake up in the morning, most of our energy is used up and hence we need to re-energize in-order to go through our daily routine.
Students who do not eat or frequently skip breakfast are at a high risk of developing gastroenteritis and several other health problems. Not only that, students are required to pay attention and grasp new concepts in school and an empty stomach may come in the way of their progress.
It has been observed that children who do not have their breakfast before going to school tend to experience a number of health problems, including headache, sleepiness, stomach pain, muscle fatigue, etc. Also several psychological issues including indecisiveness, anger, anxiety, irritability, unhappiness, nervousness, lethargy, hostility, etc., are commonly seen in students who skip their breakfast. Such problems tend to hinder the learning process.
These days, schools students are not only required to learn different subjects, but are also expected to indulge in extracurricular activities for their overall development. For performing well, they need energy which comes from the glucose that breakfast provides. Moreover, eating breakfast regularly also helps in weight management and reduces the risk of child-obesity, which has become a common problem in recent times.
Students who have the habit of eating breakfast regularly, have reported better concentration and ability to pay attention during lessons, as compared to those who do not. Breakfast is also beneficial for the memory of the students as they are better able to remember and retrieve already learned information. Even the problem-solving ability of students is seen to be improved if they eat breakfast on a regular basis.
Studies have shown that there is a direct correlation between eating a healthy breakfast and the test scores. It has been observed that students who have their breakfast regularly, score better in their tests than those who don’t. Also, because a healthy breakfast provides ¼th of the nutrition that the body requires daily, there are less chances that children will indulge in binge eating, and thus avoid fast-foods which are not good for health.
What Makes a Healthy Breakfast
Now that we know its importance, the next step is to find out what exactly should be eaten for breakfast. Though carbohydrates that provide energy to the body are one of the most important part of a healthy breakfast, it is necessary to make sure that one doesn’t consume a carb-only meal in the morning. A complete breakfast should include all the necessary nutrients, including proteins, calcium, vitamin B6, vitamin A, zinc and iron. Also, make sure that it contains a minimum of sodium, salt and sugar.
A basic breakfast should include cereals, milk and fruits. There are plenty of healthy and easy breakfast recipes available on the Internet which you can try-out. The following are a few tips to help you prepare a healthy and nutritious breakfast for your little ones:
Fruits should be made part of the daily diet of children. Fresh fruits, like, oranges, grapes, mangoes, berries, apples, kiwis, etc. are good choices to be eaten for breakfast. They can be served with a cup of yogurt and cereal.
While choosing cereals, it is best to choose the high-fiber, hot cereals such as oatmeal. Cold cereals containing less sugar and more fiber too can be served occasionally. These cereals can be eaten by adding nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon and allspice to them.
Making a smoothie for breakfast is a nutritious and tasty option that will be loved by children. A vegetable omelet served with bran muffin and low fat milk or orange juice can also be a good idea for breakfast. Kids may also enjoy whole grain waffles served with ricotta cheese, peanut butter and fruits for breakfast.
Other than these, even the food leftover from the night before such as rice or sandwiches, can be served for breakfast.
Inculcating the habit of having a complete and healthy breakfast in children will not only aid them in their life as students, but also benefit them when they grow up into healthy adults.