As the days grow longer and the temperatures begin to rise, the excitement of summer’s approach can be felt. For children, summer is arguably the most thrilling time of the year, second only to the holidays. The freedom of less structured days filled with playdates, vacations, family gatherings, and outdoor adventures marks this vibrant season. Amidst all the fun, it’s crucial for children to maintain good nutrition in summer to fuel their energy and support their growth. Let’s explore the essential elements that form the foundation of a healthy summer diet for kids.

fresh vegetables for kids

Eat Fresh, Not Factory

Ensuring your children eat fresh and nutritious foods during summer is paramount. It starts with making healthy options readily accessible and convenient. Stock your home with wholesome foods to avoid the temptation of unhealthy snacks. Processed foods, often laden with added sodium, sugar, and unhealthy fats, are easy to reach for but can undermine your child’s health. Instead, summer offers a bounty of seasonal fruits and vegetables that are both nutritious and delicious.

By keeping only healthy choices at home, you create an environment that encourages better eating habits. Fresh produce is likely to be overlooked if your pantry is filled with cookies and chips. Fill your shelves with options like canned tuna, whole-grain crackers, and unsweetened applesauce. Preparing fruits and vegetables in advance for easy snacking and keeping items like string cheese, boiled eggs, and deli meats on hand can make nutritious choices more appealing.

Balancing Nutrient-Dense Foods

Offering a variety of nutrient-dense foods is essential for your child’s diet. Ensure meals include a balanced mix of fruits, vegetables, grains, proteins, and dairy. Focusing on nutrient-dense foods provides the vitamins and nutrients necessary for your child’s health and growth. Incorporate healthy sources of protein in every meal and snack, whether plant-based or animal-based.


Water is Life

When summer temperatures soar, and outdoor activities abound, staying hydrated becomes critical for your children. They lose significant amounts of water as they play and sweat under the sun. Replenishing fluids through proper hydration is essential to prevent dehydration and promote overall health. The simplest and most effective way to ensure this is by encouraging regular water intake.

Promoting Hydration

Drinking water should be a central part of your summer health agenda for kids. It’s important to control what they drink, steering clear of sugar-sweetened beverages like sweet teas, lemonade, juice, or soda. These drinks are not recommended, especially during hot summer months. Instead, make water more appealing by adding slices of fruit for flavor or offering sparkling flavored waters as an alternative. While 100% fruit juice is acceptable in moderation, it should be limited to one cup a day to avoid excessive sugar intake.

Healthy Drink Alternatives

Besides water, other healthy drink options can help keep your children hydrated. Milk and plant-based milk alternatives can provide essential nutrients like calcium and vitamin D. However, promoting water as the primary hydration source remains crucial.

child eats a healthy meal

Good, and Good for ‘Em

Ensuring that healthy foods are also delicious can be a game-changer, especially for picky eaters. Sometimes, the challenge lies in making nutritious meals that appeal to a child’s taste buds. Here are some creative and tasty ideas to get your children excited about eating healthy.

Seven Layer Dip in Jars with Baked Tortilla Chips

These portable jars are perfect for on-the-go snacking and are packed with protein from zesty black beans and taco-spiced Greek yogurt. They also contain heart-healthy fats from avocado and a satisfying crunch from toasted corn. Homemade baked tortilla strips serve as the perfect dipping tool, allowing you to enjoy every last bite of this nutritious snack.

Turkey, Cheese & Veggie Plate

This colorful and easy-to-assemble picnic dinner includes kid-friendly options like deli meat, cheese, and raw vegetables. It’s a hit with both children and adults, offering a balanced and fun meal that doesn’t require utensils. Adding store-bought or homemade hummus and a few cookies can complete this enjoyable and healthy picnic spread.

Summer Fun and Nutrition Combined

In addition to nutritious meals, engaging in fun activities can enhance your child’s summer experience. Programs like the Summer Adventure Camp offer a range of exciting activities that promote both physical and cognitive development. From bubble parties and gardening to theater shows and cooking, these camps provide a holistic approach to learning and play. Conducted in a play-based, immersion teaching method, these activities not only entertain but also educate, making learning Spanish fun and effortless.

Maintaining Nutrition in Summer

Ensuring that your children maintain good nutrition in summer is a combination of offering healthy food options, promoting adequate hydration, and making nutritious meals enjoyable. By focusing on these elements, you can support your child’s health and development while they enjoy all the fun that summer has to offer.