Kids have small tummies, short attention spans, and a big need for nutrients. Instead of giving them junk food handouts, use snack time as another daily opportunity to incorporate healthy foods into your kids’ diet.
Vancouver, WA (PRWEB) August 20, 2014
As moms and dads prepare their children to go back to school, and for themselves to return to the normal routine of dropping their little ones off at daycare with supplies and snacks in tow,Kristen Yarker, MSc, RD encourages them to use the opportunity to implement a new nutritional standard for their kids’ snack time.
Yarker explains, “Kids have small tummies, short attention spans, and a big need for nutrients. Instead of giving them junk food handouts, use snack time as another daily opportunity to incorporate healthy foods into your kids’ diet.”
Yarker recommends that parents rethink the less healthy, grabbed on-the-go food choices that often comprise snack time. Instead, Yarker recommends offering kids healthy foods from two to five of the different food groups. In doing so, kids have five to six opportunities every day to get in all of the nutritious foods they need, rather than trying to incorporate them all into the usual three meals a day.
Recent research reports that children need to see a food more than ten times before they will willingly eat and learn to enjoy it. In her six years of experience working with families with picky eaters, Yarker has found that parents usually only present new foods at dinnertime. Children’s commonly poor behavior during that meal is oftentimes a result of learning to anticipate new (i.e. scary) foods to be served. To counteract this negative association, Yarker suggests using snack time as an additional opportunity to present new foods.
Yarker adds, “When kids learn to expect that new foods may be served to them at any point in the day, including snack time, they build the confidence they need to overcome picky eating and try new foods all on their own.”
To further improve kids’ nutrition, Yarker recommends scheduling snacks to be served at approximately the same times each day. She also recommends children enjoy their snack time sitting down at a table rather than eating on the run, helping easily distracted toddlers and preschoolers learn healthy eating habits.
To provide parents with healthy snack ideas for children, Yarker offers a complimentary resource called “101 Healthy Snack Ideas (That Even Picky Kids Will Eat),” filled with recipes and evidence-based techniques for transforming picky eaters. Parents can get a copy at Products.KristenYarker.com/101snacks.
Kristen offers online workshops, e-books, and additional resources for teaching parents how to help kids develop food-friendly habits. To learn more about Kristen Yarker or find more child feeding tips and learning materials, please visit her website at KristenYarker.com.
About Kristen Yarker, MSc, Dietitian:
Child-feeding expert Kristen Yarker, MSc, Dietitian, has been helping Moms and Dads to support their picky eaters to try new foods since 2008. Yarker’s approach to children’s nutrition is honest, practical, loving and evidence-based. As a dietitian with the British Columbia Ministry of Health, Yarker developed numerous province-wide nutritional resources, including the Healthy Eating chapter in Toddlers First Steps. After helping friends overcome their children’s picky eating habits, in 2008, Yarker decided to open her own business to support even more families. Yarker now offers workshops online, an e-book, blog and additional resources to help families worldwide. For more information, visit KristenYarker.com.