Did you know that summer doesn’t “officially” start until June 21?
I guess that means that we’re technically still in the ‘spring season’, however the temperature is 96 degrees today, and I’d say it sure feels like summer! This is the time of year that most kids are finally out of school and at home. More time around the house often leads to increased snacking. Warmer weather can also lead to the urge to splurge on less healthier foods, such as ice cream or popsicles.
Prepare the kids and yourself for the next snack attack with these nutritious tips:
- Make Snacking Fun: Let the Kids Help Prepare their Snacks
- Fruit kabobs: cut favorite fruit into bite sized pieces and line up on a skewer (bananas, grapes, strawberries, raspberries). Serve cold.
- Fruit pizzas: spread peanut butter evenly on a tortilla. Place slices of banana on top
- Top yogurt with frozen blueberries or strawberries
- Make a banana split: top a banana with strawberry frozen yogurt and whole grain cereal
- Spread peanut butter on top of celery sticks. Top with raisins
- Toast a whole wheat waffle. Top with low fat yogurt and bananas
- Choose the Healthier Option
- Look for ‘baked’ chips instead regular chips. Follow portion control (1 serving is usually about 12-14 chips)
- Look for the low fat version of fruit/veggie dip; substitute chips for carrots or cherry tomatoes
- Choose low fat frozen yogurt over ice cream
- Encourage 1 serving of fruits or vegetables before eating a sweet treat
- Sip Smarter
- Encourage water as much as possible. Drinking soda loaded with caffeine can have a dehydrating effect.
- Purchase juices labeled as “100% fruit juice” and watch the serving sizes. Avoid juiced titled “juice cocktail,” “fruit drink” or “fruit punch” as these will usually have added sugars.
- Encourage skim milk in place of soda. Skim milk is packed with protein, low in fat and a great alternative to most high sugar drinks.
Tasty Fruit and Yogurt Popsicles
A tasty summer treat to leave you satisfied without blowing your diet this summer.
- 1 cup nonfat, vanilla yogurt
- 1 cup fresh or frozen fruit (examples: blueberries, strawberries, banana’s, pineapple, peaches)
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 4 wooden popsicle sticks or plastic spoons
- 4 paper cups (popsicle molds also work great if you have them!)
- Place yogurt, fruit and honey in blender. (I used my absolute favorite blender, the Ninja Bullet! It’s great at pureeing food frozen to a evenly blended consistency. If your blender isn’t as strong, you may have to add a few drops of milk or liquid to the mixture).
- Blend until smooth.
- Pour into paper cups, dividing mixture evenly among the 4 cups.
- Cover cups with foil. Make slits in the center of foil and insert popsicle sticks.
- Freeze 5 hours or until solid.
- Peel off the paper cup and serve!
*Note: popsicles can also be made using plastic popsicle molds such as these!