When it comes to choosing healthy, tasty summer snacks for your children, local nutritionists say the process is simple, if you follow a few rules.
“Look at your labels. Things like sugar free,” said Janel Welch, the clinical nutrition manager at
One of the most common summer snacks is a popsicle. However, these icy delights are often loaded with sugar.
“The sugar that's in them is the same as in soda or candy. It's all a simple sugar that's considered an empty calorie,” said Welch, who advises parents to make their own, “you can make popsicles on your own by using 100% fruit juice and putting them into ice cube containers. You can also add a little bit of crushed fruit in there and that's a good treat.”
As for juice drinks like Kool-Aid, Welch advises cutting back on the amount of sugar, adding more water. Also, avoid sugar substitutes.
“In terms of sweeteners and children, there's not a lot of research completed with the effects of sweeteners and children, so it's best to stay away from them as much as possible,” said Welch.
The fruit you packed in their lunches this school year is still the best treat in the heat but you can dress it up a bit this summer.
“Dip it in yogurt and roll it in some crushed cereal and put it in the freezer. That's a good snack they can pull out of the freezer later on and munch on later on. Nice and cool and refreshing and full of nutrients,” said Welch.
Here are more tips for healthy family snacks: