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Experts Explain Why Kids Should Not Skip Breakfast
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  • Breakfast is widely known as the most important meal of the day, yet a lot of people, including children, skip this part of the daily sustenance. Experts point out that kids breakfasts provide the best opportunity to eat healthy and get the essential nutrients early in the day.

    Why is breakfast important?

    Simply put, breakfast, as the first meal, it gets the body going for the rest of the day, according to Dr. William Cochran, a past member of the American Academy of Pediatric’s Committee on Nutrition, in Healthy Children.

    He adds that children who eat breakfast are generally in better health overall. Well, it helps that the types of food typically associated with the morning meal are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. They provide healthy food for kids.

    Dr. Cochran explains, “Breakfast is a great time to consume fiber in the form of cereals and whole wheat breads.” Fiber offers a lot of benefits, especially to growing kids like your preschoolers. It makes the digestive system healthy and keeps constipation at bay.

    Milk is also a breakfast staple that provides the calcium needed in bonebuilding. The same goes for breakfast cereals and eggs, which are likewise rich in vitamin D. Aside from its role in promoting the absorption of calcium, vitamin D may also boost immunity and help prevent infections, autoimmune diseases, cancer, and diabetes.

    Experts from Nemours Kids' Health also point that breakfast is an effective way to give the body the refuelling it needs for the rest of the day. They add that kids who eat breakfast are more likely to eat healthier and be more active. On the other hand, those who skip breakfast tend to feel more tired, restless, or irritable.

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    How to make kids eat breakfast

    Experts suggest to give your kids a healthy breakfast of whole-grain waffles, fresh fruit, and low-fat milk each morning. To help you achieve this, there are solutions, including:

    • Stock your kitchen with healthy breakfast options.
    • Prepare as much as you can the night before, such as getting dishes and utensils ready, as well as cutting up the fruits.
    • Get everyone up 10 minutes earlier to have time for breakfast.
    • Let kids help plan and prepare breakfast.

    In the 2019 study, titled The “Motor of the Day”: Parent and School-Age Children’s Cognitions, Barriers, and Supports for Breakfast, parents who were interviewed offered their own strategies in overcoming barriers to breakfast.

    Some of the parents said they always have "on-the-go" options for mornings when they don't have enough time to make breakfast. These options include granola bars, dry cereal, and fruit yogurt. Other suggestions include making boiled eggs always available in the kitchen, as well as premade pancakes that can be warmed in the microwave.

    Several parents said they give their children the responsibility for the kids breakfasts. They point out that even six-year-olds have access to most of the breakfast options and may also have the skills to prepare their own food.

    For parents who have picky eaters, they always remind their children that eating breakfast will help them grow healthier and strong. Other parents, whose children have a lack of desire to eat, give a variety of breakfast every day so the little ones will get enticed, if not excited, to eat breakfast, at least.

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    There were parents who took to creative ways to make kids breakfasts enjoyable. One of them said, “My kids love to read the comics, so that’s what they do during breakfast." Another said, “Music helps us, we don’t usually talk in the morning."

    (If your kids love eggs, you can try these recipes here. They may also like this French toast recipe here. More recipes to try here also.)

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