Eat Foods From All The Food Groups!

USDA MyPlate

Breakfast- It's The Most Important Meal Of The Day!

School breakfast

  • Try planning out breakfasts for everyday of the week and prep them on Sunday. Then throughout the week everything is already ready! Try hard boiling some eggs on Sunday to enjoy throughout the week.
  • Prep the night before. Getting breakfast on the table is tricky for most busy families. Setting the breakfast table at night can make your morning a little smoother. While you're at it, why not put out a few boxes of whole-grain cereal for kids to pick and choose from? All they'll have to do in the morning is pour and add milk
  • Start small. If your family doesn't usually eat anything in the morning, it may take a while to develop the habit. Starting with a mini meal of yogurt topped with low-fat granola or a small slice of whole-wheat toast can make the transition easier
  • Set the alarm 10 minutes earlier. Hectic mornings can make it difficult for kids (and parents) to find time for breakfast. Waking up just a few minutes earlier provides time to squeeze in a quick morning meal.
  • Dress first, eat second. Kids are more likely to feel hungry once they've had a chance to wake up.
  • Make sure you're well stocked. No time to cook? No problem. Quick-fix foods like whole-grain cereal, string cheese, berries, yogurt, and whole-wheat toast, mini bagels and English muffins make grabbing breakfast a cinch.

Don't forget breakfast at school is FREE everyday to every student!! Fuel up with school breakfast!

Getting Your Kids To Eat

  • Let your child explore
  • Plan a fun trip to a grocery store or farmer's market with your child
  • Give your child cookbooks or cooking magazines and have them look for recipes they would like to try
  • Ask older children to help plan a meal
  • While shopping, encourage your kids to pick produce they want to try
  • Challenge your child to put one item of each color in the cart: white, blue, orange, green, purple, red, yellow, brown
  • Use the experience to sharpen math skills. If oranges are four for a dollar, how much does it cost to buy six?

Tips For Picky Eaters

  1. Start by introducing healthier elements into foods that your child already likes. For example, offer blueberry pancakes, carrot muffins, fruit slices over a favorite cereal, chunks of bell pepper in a potato salad, or shredded veggies over rice.
  2. Include your kids in the prep work. By being involved in grocery shopping and food preparation, your kids will have more "buy-in.' If they feel some ownership over the meal, they may be more likely to eat it.
  3. Don't buy unhealthy foods. Out of sight, out of mind. If the chips and cookies aren't around, your kids can't eat them. They may resist at first, but when they get hungry, they'll start munching the carrot sticks. Keep healthy foods on hand - 100 percent juice instead of colas or sugary drinks, and a bag of apples instead of a bag of chips.
  4. Schedule snack time and stick to it. Most kids like routine. If your kids know they will only get food at certain times, they'll eat what they get when they get it. Try to have snacks incorporate two food groups. For example, offer cheese and whole-grain crackers or apple slices with low-fat yogurt or cottage cheese.
  5. Have healthy finger foods available. Kids like to pick up foods, so give them foods they can handle. Fruit and veggie chunks (raw or cooked) are great finger-food options.
  6. Repeal the "clean your plate" rule. Kids know when they're full, so let them stop. Overeating is one of the major reasons we get too many calories.
  7. Encourage kids to "eat their colors." This game works well with younger kids. Food that's bland in color often also lacks nutrients. Eating a variety of brightly colored foods provides more nutrients in greater variety.
  8. Don't cut out treats altogether. Think moderation. A scoop of ice cream or a serving of Oreos is all right occasionally. If you cut out all the goodies, your kids will be more likely to overeat when they do get them. Make sure to moderate the treat consumption.
  9. Veg out at the dinner table, not the TV. Eating in front of the TV is distracting, and kids may not notice that they're full because they're wrapped up in the show. Eating as a family is a great time to catch up.
  10. Be a good role model. The best way to influence kids is by example. Don't expect them to eat spinach if you won't touch it.
  11. Keep exposing them to different foods. It can take 10-15 times for kids to "like' something so keep trying! Also, try preparing it in different ways (raw, cooked, sautéed).
  12. Fun names/appearances for healthy foods! Let them help prepare and name a dish after them - Sarah's sweet potatoes; or call fruits and vegetables different names - cantaloupe/ candy-loupe!
  13. Work off flavors they do like! If there is a seasoning or texture they like run with it! Try other foods prepared a similar way and tell them it's just like the dish they like!

Nutrition Games And Resources