Friday, 29 July 2016

Good Old Walking Habit

In the past children used to walk their way to school and back and they also used to go outside and play all day long when possible. Nowadays things have changed, all the technology that grew happens to have, sometimes, a bad impact on children`s health. Video games, web sites, tablets, laptops and many more keep kids occupied, lacking physical activity.

So, it`s about time parents and caregivers need to learn more about these issues and encourage kids to step outside and move up in order to be healthy and happy.

It may sound boring to some, but walking is one of the best forms of exercise that kids can get. It's especially helpful for children who don't enjoy extreme physical exertion or competitive games.

Walking is a very general term - it can range from a peaceful stroll through the local park to hiking up a mountain. Kids as young as 2 can go out for a simple walk with mom or dad, but you should probably hold off on hiking until the kids are 5 or 6. Either way, it's a great opportunity to see the world, get in touch with nature, and stay in shape!

Here are some of the benefits that your child will get from walking:

Physical benefits

·         Balance

·         Coordination

·         Leg strength

·         Weight control

·         Social benefits

·         Feeling of freedom

·         Self-esteem

·         Environmental awareness

·         Family bonding

Sources: National Center for Bicycling and Walking;

Tuesday, 26 July 2016


Mid-morning and afternoon snacks are very important nutritional moments for a child during the day.This is especially true if there are long intervals between the main meals of the day. For this reason they should not be considered simply as filler snacks in between meals.

The mid-morning snack should not replace breakfast if it was missed or if it was inadequate. It must play an important nutritional function by integrating energy and preventing the lowering of the sugar levels, which could happen after a few hours of physical activities.

Mid-afternoon snacks instead must give proper energy intake and nutrients. It is an important nutritional element, especially for children who practice sports. The mid-morning and afternoon snacks therefore should be low in fat so as to not compromise the appetite for the main meals. Both snacks should respectively cover  5 to 10% of the daily calorie intake.

A healthy and well balanced snack must have very specific nutritional characteristics:

   1. be filling and satisfying without burdening too much the digestion
   2. It must not be too sweet nor too salty
   3. Ensure it provides the right amount of energy.
The best foods are those balanced and easy to digest based on: fruit, vegetables, milk, yogurt and cereals.
On the other hand foods high in calories, rich in fats and/or sugars are not recommended, such as, sandwiches with cold cut meats, sweet and savoury snacks, fruit juices with added sugar and fizzy drinks. All of these will reduce the appetite and cause nutritional imbalances in the daily diet.

Fresh fruits in particular is a valuable snack and a good opportunity to introduce healthy protective nutrients. Also by introducing healthier snack foods with fewer calories allows the child  to reach the main meals with the correct level of appetite.

Given the fact that most children eat at least 2 or 3 of the five meals a day at school: lunch, mid-morning and / or afternoon snacks, these moments represent an important opportunity to impart nutritional education.

For the children who practice sports the afternoon snack should be rich in carbohydrates and low in fat and easily digestible. It is advisable to always play sport on an empty stomach. A light snack provides the right energy and certainly halves the digestion time. Banana, yogurt, cereal biscuits,  whole wheat bread with ham, represent a good choice.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Yoghurt mousse with blueberries

Two recipes that are great for a snack or a refreshing breakfast - energetic and balanced.

Yoghurt mousse with blueberries

Ingredients for 2 portions:

·         170 g of Greek yogurt (0% fats)
·         2 frozen organic egg whites*
·         3 drops of lemon juice
·         2 g of stevia **
·         Fresh blueberries washed and dried (as required)
·         Natural oatmeal (as required)

* previously frozen egg whites
** can be substituted with 1 tablespoon of powdered unrefined sugar

Melt the frozen egg whites in a small pan, stirring frequently to avoid them cooking. Once they have defrosted place them in a bowl and mount the egg whites with the lemon juice.  In a separate dish whip the yogurt with stevia (or the unrefined sugar, whichever you prefer), add the egg whites with a spatula. Transfer the mixture into a disposable pastry bag. 

Make up the dessert by alternating the layers of fruit and flakes with the yoghurt mousse. Level the surface and garnish with blueberries and other flakes. Level the top layer and decorate with blueberries and oatmeal. Put in the fridge for at least 3 hours. To be served chilled.