This post is Sponsored by Happy Family Brands, but the content and opinions expressed are my own.
My daughter is seven and one of the tallest in second grade. I promise you we feed her well, although you wouldn’t believe it if you heard how often she asks for food. She’s a bottomless pit, and I’ve had to start coming up with ways to make sure she doesn’t go hungry at school. Elsie has a short attention span and struggles to remain focused on school work, so the last thing she needs is to worry about a rumbling belly. I’ve decided to investigate the best ways of keeping kids full until dinner because while they’re at school they only have that lunch box to go to!
As I mentioned in my last recipe post, Elsie is quite the food critic and likes a lunch box packed with all the food groups. She insists on checking out and reporting back on other kid’s lunch boxes for ideas too… although I appreciate the constructive criticism, I do believe I’m raising a princess. As well as investigating the best filling food groups to design the perfect lunch box combo, I’m testing out Happy Family’s range of oat snack bars to see if they achieve princess standards!
The Best Food Groups for Keeping Kids Full Until Dinner
You may automatically think the best way to keep your growing kids full is to pack them with carbs. And although carbohydrates are an important factor in energy supply, it is fiber that stabilizes blood sugar and slows the burn of carbohydrates. On top of this, insoluble fiber found in fruit skins, nuts and grains holds water and adds to the feeling of fullness in your belly.
A 2016 study confirmed what many nutritionists have been preaching for years. A higher protein count makes people feel fuller than diets rich in carbs and fats. Fats and carbs are crucial to energy supply, especially for energetic, growing kids, but don’t underestimate the importance of protein in keeping kids full until dinner.
I’m returning to carbs because, without some serious fuel in the body bank, no-one’s going to be getting anything done. Kids are burning off some serious calories, and a low carb free is not appropriate. Although most foods contain some carbohydrates, opt for the nutrient-rich carbs such as whole-grains, potatoes, corn, and beans. Carbs from added sugars won’t do anyone any favors.
Creating a slow burn snack & Lunch box
Although breakfast is the most important meal of the day, we have to leave the house for school around 7am. That leaves a very short amount of time for breakfast and although I’d love Elsie to eat more, she’s not ready to eat a huge breakfast when she’s just woken up.
Therefore school snack time at around 8.30am becomes crucial to her staying full through the day. We headed to Sprouts Farmers Market to pick up some Happy Kid Fruit & Oat Bars to give Elsie the best chance of making it to lunch time without a rumble. While we were there we picked up the ingredients for her slow burn but healthy lunch and here’s what we came up with:
- Hummus: High in fiber and protein, hummus makes the perfect slow burn lunch solution!
- Dipping Vegetables: Using vegetables to dip into hummus is a great way to sneak some color, vitamins, and minerals into that lunch box.
- Apples: Apples are also packed with vitamins and leaving the skin on bulks up the fiber content of your lunch.
- Wholewheat bread: Reloads the carbs bank, perfect for dipping, and the whole grain is a great fiber source too.
- Nuts: High in fiber, protein, and healthy fats, nuts are great fuel for growing kids!
- Happy Kid Fruit & Oat Bar: The Happy Family brand keep these bars simple with natural ingredients and no added sugar or preservatives. They are made with organic whole grain oats and organic fruit, creating the perfect way of keeping kids full until dinner.
knowing your limits & Picking your battles
I’m all for healthy eating, especially when it comes to growing children. However, I’m also a big believer in knowing your limits and picking your battles. I make some things myself from scratch, but I buy some snacks and quick go-to foods pre-maid. Happy Kid Fruit & Oat Bars will put your mind at ease because they have no artificial colors, flavors, toxic persistent pesticides, and GMOs. They are gluten free, sized well for children and most importantly, they are delicious!
Happy Kids Fruit & Oats Bars come in three flavors:
- Banana and Chocolate,
- Apple and Cinnamon,
- Blueberry and Raspberry.
If you want to stock up and get yourself a bargain, the multipacks on Amazon are
Elsie is giving the fruit and oat bars a big thumbs up and I’m feeling confident the oats, hummus, fruit and whole grain in her lunch box will help her focus at school.