With Valley schools starting the new school year this month, parents are checking off their to-do lists for back to school shopping. However, preparing for another school year doesn’t just involve shopping for school supplies. That checklist should also include preparing your kids for a safe and healthy year.
Pre-made snacks are easy to pack in your child’s lunch, but they aren’t always the healthiest. Fresh foods packed with nutrients are a better alternative. Some popular, fresh, delicious and easy snacks include:
- Veggie sticks – Add in some hummus or ranch for extra flavor
- Ants on a log – Always a fun one, you can make your ants either chocolate chips or raisins on top of your celery with peanut butter
- Trail mix – For a splash of sweet add in a few semi sweet chocolate chips or yogurt chips with your nuts and raisins
- Edamame and broccoli – Popular even with little guys, especially if they are pretending to be a huge brontosaurus eating a tree
- Fresh berries and apple slices – Dip them in a side of vanilla yogurt or peanut butter for some added excitement, or Nutella for a special treat
- Nuts – lightly salted with sea salt is okay too
- Banana in any form – Anyone remember the peanut butter banana sandwich option?
- Yogurt – A great source of dairy
- Smoothies – Fresh fruit and veggies blended with frozen bananas are naturally sweet and the banana creates a slushy consistency
The choice for drinking should be pure water. A refillable water bottle, preferably one that keeps drinks cool, should be packed in the backpack every day for good, pure hydration. Lastly, remember sunscreen for the hot Phoenix recesses.
Yearly checkups are more than just vaccines. Although vaccines are important, annual visits provide the opportunity for your doctor to exam your child from head to toe, focusing on each organ system. The doctor will check your child’s vital signs and discuss where your child falls on the growth chart. If your child is over or underweight, this is an excellent opportunity for education and discussion with your provider.
Getting a full check up includes screening for physical, cognitive, and social developmental milestones. These milestones include, but are certainly not limited to: crawling, walking, stacking blocks, hand eye coordination, speech and language development, appropriate social interactions skills, anger management, and academic development. Any identified concerns you have or are identified by your doctor will be addressed, and resources can be identified if needed. If your provider practices in an integrated setting like Bayless Integrated Healthcare, often all of these concerns can be managed under one roof.
Going back to school can be an exciting and busy time of year, but making sure more than just shopping for school supplies is on your check list, your child will have a safe and healthy school year.
Written by: Dr. Kathleen Brite
Dr. Kathleen Brite’s background is as extensive as the care she provides. As both a practicing and a teaching physician at Bayless Integrated Healthcare, she’s abreast of the latest advancements in treatment and patient care trends, and serves children and adults using a truly integrated model. She is especially interested in community medicine and is committed to eliminating barriers so that quality healthcare is accessible to all. For more information about Dr. Brite and Bayless Integrated Healthcare, please visit www.baylesshealthcare.com.