The best snacks to both satisfy and fuel active kids

healthy snacks for kids
If you’re a parent to a young, budding athlete or generally active child, it’s important to provide them with nutritious snacks that will help to restore their energy, as well as build and repair their muscles.

Leading dietitian and Mayver’s ambassador, Susie Burrell, says that active children should eat foods that contain good quality carbohydrates, proteins and healthy fats to help fuel their body.

Carbohydrates are the primary source of fuel for the muscles which means that eating an adequate amount of carbohydrates before and after sporting activities can help to sustain energy levels and prevent fatigue,” says Susie.

Healthy high carb snacks include fruits such as bananas, oranges and blueberries, a serving of oats, and wholegrain toast with Mayver’s Crunchy Peanut Butter (for an extra hit of protein and healthy fats).

Protein as a source of fuel

“Protein too is an incredible source of fuel, and works to build, maintain and repair body muscle tissue and to keep energy levels regulated. Good sources of protein include meat, fish, poultry, nuts and dairy.

It’s a great idea to offer your child a protein-rich snack such as celery with a 100% natural peanut butter like Mayver’s, hard-boiled eggs, yoghurt and cheese.

healthy snacks for kids
Dietitian Susie Burrell

“In addition to carbohydrates and protein, healthy fats (including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats) work to support your child’s recovery, energy supply and immune system. So, my top tip is for your child to snack, snack, snack – my Peanut Butter and Chia Jam Drops are a tasty option, can easily be prepared ahead of time and provide a good source of healthy fats too!”

Avoid high sugar options

When choosing snacks to help sustain your child, Susie says that it’s important to avoid high sugar options that provide a short term energy boost.

“Be mindful of highly processed snacks that are high in sugar such as sweetened breakfast cereals, packaged cookies and energy drinks. Feeding your child snacks such as these can spike their blood sugar and insulin levels, leading to a brief rise in energy, followed by a crash that will leave them tired and hungry again.” says Susie.

Let’s face it — children are active regardless of whether they’re playing a game of footy or running through the house. No matter what, they need the right amount and mix of foods to support their higher level of activity.

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