Nutrition tips for back to school

Science says that well-nourished children learn better, behave better and feel better, so ensuring that snacks and lunches are nutritious is important.

  • Sep. 2, 2011 8:00 a.m.

Science says that well-nourished children learn better, behave better and feel better, so ensuring that snacks and lunches are nutritious is important.

A healthy breakfast:

• A good breakfast is the best way to start the day. The energy received from a nutritious morning meal is what jump starts our body and brain, and allows children to focus and learn easier in the classroom.

•  When planning breakfast for your children, try to include three of the four food groups from Canada’s Food Guide — Vegetables and Fruit, Grain Products, Milk and Alternatives and Meat and Alternatives:

Here are some examples:

• An egg, slice of whole-grain toast, and sliced tomatoes.

• Whole grain toast with peanut butter and sliced banana.

• Yogurt, granola and fruit.

• Breakfast smoothie made with yogurt or alternative, and your favourite frozen fruit.

Healthy snacks:

• Snacking throughout the day at set times will help to keep children’s blood sugar more stable, and provide lasting energy for physical activity at break times and focused learning in the classroom.

• When planning snacks for your children, try to use whole foods as much as possible, limiting the amount of pre-packaged, processed foods in your child’s lunches.

• Pack healthy snacks, which include at least two of the four Canada’s Food Guide food groups.

Here are some examples:

• Yogurt with fresh fruit.

• Sliced apple with cheese.

• Banana bread with cream cheese.

• Carrots with hummus or bean dip.

• Hardboiled egg with sliced cucumber.

• Small homemade bran muffin with orange wedges.

Healthy Lunches:

• Lunch is a great time for children to connect with their peers over food and fuel up for the afternoon.

Here are some examples:

• Sandwiches are classic. Start with whole grain bread and choose your fillings:

• Tuna salad — add celery for extra crunch.

• Egg salad — add radish and green onions for extra crunch.

• Chicken salad — add apples, celery and curry spice for a spin on the original.

• Veggie — add hummus, avocado and/or cheese to make these sandwiches more filling.

Salads are a great way to shake things up:

• Pasta salad — add cubes of cheese and/or leftover meat or alternatives with plenty of veggies. Marinate in dressing overnight for extra flavour.

• Taco salad — add lean ground beef, lettuce, tomato, grated cheese and salsa.

• Spinach salad — add a protein of some sort such as leftover salmon, nuts and/or seeds plus veggies.

• Mexican wraps — with grilled chicken, black bean spread, spiced rice and avocado in a whole wheat tortilla.

• Leftovers that can be eaten cold, think: quiche, homemade pizza, lasagna.

• Picnic lunch — with hard boiled eggs, sliced cheese, bean salad, veggies and dip.

• Homemade chilli or hearty soups in a thermos, alongside a whole wheat bun.

• Sending sliced veggies with your child’s lunch is a great idea, whether they eat them as a snack or alongside their meal.

• Fruit makes a great lunch-time dessert!

For more information, visit the HealthyFamiliesBC website at

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Highway 97 is closed south of 150 Mile House Tuesday, March 2 due to a police incident. (Black Press file photo)
Police incident closes Highway 97 south of Williams Lake

There is no estimated time of opening or detour available notes Drive BC

(Tribune file photo)
Roses to Good Samaritans who helped me during theft

It restores one’s faith in human nature

Wyatt McCullough didn’t make it look easy, but he managed to succeed in the steer wrestling event at the High School Rodeo, held during in 2020 at Alex Fraser Park. This was the first rodeo event held in Quesnel in 2020 after everything else was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Cassidy Dankochik Photo - Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
Saddle up: Quesnel Rodeo Club planning three 2021 events

Club president Ray Jasper said the rodeos could include rough stock events

Maggie Ferguson continues to deliver pet food to communities in B.C’s Central Interior and North. She hopes to make things easier by eventually purchasing a truck and trailer through fundraising efforts. (Perfect Pastures Animal Sanctuary Facebook photo)
From Delta with love, Maggie Ferguson helps northern pet owners with food

Animal sanctuary owner leads efforts in delivering thousands of pounds of pet food

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Dr. Amit Desai of St. Francis Hospital receives a COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 17. (Photo courtesy of CHI Franciscan)
B.C. has now vaccinated more people from COVID-19 than total confirmed cases

B.C. has reached a milestone, vaccinating roughly 1.6% of its population from the coronavirus

Nanaimo RCMP are looking for a suspect who smashed the window of an adult toy store and made off with more than $1,200 in merchandise. (File photo)
Vancouver Island sex shop out $1,200 in merchandise after suspect steals ‘colossal’ product

Suspect smashed window of Nanaimo store, cutting himself in the process

Riverside Calvary Church in Walnut Grove. (Langley Advance Times file)
B.C. is ‘stereotyping’ churches as riskier for COVID than other spaces, lawyer argues

Judge said that freedom of expression, religion are not at issue in the case

B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell gets acquainted with Tsawwassen First Nation Chief Kim Baird’s 10-month-old daughter Sophia, husband Steve and four-year-old Amy at the B.C. legislature before a ceremony to endorse the Tsawwassen Treaty, Oct. 15, 2007. (Sharon Tiffin/Black Press)
Indigenous consent comes first and last for B.C. industrial projects

Environment minister can still approve permits without consent

B.C.’s court of appeal in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Kootenay man appeals 7-year conviction for New Year’s Eve kidnapping, beating

Brandon Coons, 27, was convicted on five charges, including assault with a weapon

An investigation is underway after two VPD officers were recorded posing for pictures near a dead body at Third Beach on Feb. 24. (Screen grab/Zachary Ratcliff)
Vancouver officers placed on desk duty after filmed posing next to dead body

Pair put in ‘non-deployable, admin positions’ as the investigation into their conduct continues

(Black Press file photo)
Homicide team to look into death of 11-year-old Agassiz boy

Agassiz RCMP were called out Friday to assist with a child in medical distress

Most Read