What are your kids like when they get home from school? My son has a looong day, not home until after 3:30 with the bus ride. Most days he seems to crash, just becomes an emotional mess, and I thought it was a blood sugar low (I get them too). After talking to our pediatrician, she suggested he have a snack including protein as soon as he gets home. This is really helping; it gets him through until dinnertime with less sibling fighting and crankiness than he had before. Here are some of our favorite protein snacks for afterschool:
- Hummus: I pick up hummus when it’s on sale, and occasionally there are coupons out. My kids prefer the roasted red pepper version since it’s sweeter than plain, and we like to dip everything from celery to crackers. You can also get your kids involved in trying new flavors by making your own (here's a recipe from Meal Makeover Moms).
- Yogurt: Instead of buying the kid version of yogurt, with its radical colors and sugar, try using vanilla or plain and add your own mix-ins (honey makes plain yogurt palatable for kids). You can give kids a choice of granola, nuts, berries, raisins, cranberries, and more for personalized yogurt parfaits.
- Low-Fat Cheese: When I find cheese sticks on sale, they’re a great complement to veggies like carrots, celery, grape tomatoes, and strips of green pepper.
- Milk: For an afternoon on the go, it’s easier to pack a cup of milk to go along with a piece of fruit or small container of crackers.