Back to School Fuel

Meals being prepared for school. Image: Canva-Vanessa Loring

You’ve got your kids’ backpacks, clothes, new shoes, haircut, and school supplies, but have you thought about what is most important? What are you going to feed your kids and how are you going to boost their immune system, support healthy sleep, help them focus, and balance their moods?

Nourishing our children is one of the most important roles we have as a parent. There is no doubt that what we feed our kids will determine how they act, feel, behave and perform at school and at home. Every time we shop for food, pack lunches and fuel for the day, and feed our families at night, we have the power to influence their health.

Sadly children are experiencing anxiety at an all-time high and as they return to school that can also be ramped up, but the foods and nourishment we provide can be essential to help pacify that anxiety and balance the nervous system which can help them feel more calm. Starting their day with caffeine, refined sugars, no protein or essential fats can trigger anxiety. Drinking soda, eating lots of sugar, processed foods containing food dyes, artificial flavors, and preservatives such as MSG can also trigger excitatory activity in the brain which can trigger anxiousness. What we feed our kids becomes even more essential to their health and mental and emotional well-being.

The following are some essential tips to get your family fueling the right way:

1. Embrace a Whole Foods Nutritional Lifestyle

As kids are heading back to school, it is time to put some real thought, effort, energy, and love into their lunch boxes. Start your kids off on the right track this year with healthy whole foods.

Lunch box ideas for kids

This is essential for focus, attention, memory, good grades, long and lasting energy, and fuel for their extra-curricular activities. It will also help their physical appearance by providing the right nutrients to prevent acne, dandruff, greasy hair, body odor, and excess weight that so many kids get picked on for.

2. Include Protein with Each Meal, Especially Breakfast

Start their day with protein. Protein will leave them with long and lasting energy and will help them to feel satisfied and satiated throughout the morning. Protein also contains the amino acids that help to produce the neurotransmitters in the brain (feel-good hormones). This is key to help prevent and improve anxiety, depression, insomnia and restless legs.

3. Pack Nutritious Snacks

Pack nutritious snacks that include essential fats which will nourish their brain and keep blood sugars stable which is essential for memory, attention, and focus.

4. Ensure lunches are full of protein, essential fats, and vegetables

5. Hydration is key!

Send your kids to school with a 1-liter stainless steel water bottle to ensure they are hydrating throughout the day. This is essential to stay hydrated and nourish their brain.

6. Mid-Afternoon Snacks to Prevent Hangry Attitudes!

Kids are typically starving and ravenous after school so welcome them home with a healthy snack to rejuvenate them before homework or extracurricular activities

7. Family Dinner is Important

Aim to sit down to a family dinner 3 times a week or more.

Family dinner with parents and two children enjoying dinner.

Find out what your kids liked most in their day and disliked most in their day as you eat a nourishing meal cooked with love.

8. Let them Help!

Get your kids involved in meal planning and preparing their lunches. Connecting to their food and understanding what eating well is all about will raise their odds of embracing a healthy whole food lifestyle.

I wish your children a healthy school year. May you feed their bellies with love and nourishment!

Yours in health & vitality,


Amy Bondar is a leading Nutrition expert and Certified Eating Psychology Coach who is passionate about helping her clients achieve maximum health and vitality through personalized nutrition and lifestyle coaching.

Amy Bondar’s comprehensive skill-set, two decades of experience and compassionate approach have allowed hundreds of people to achieve the vitality we all desire, and deserve.

The days of generic meal plans, fad diets, yo-yo dieting and simple advice about calories and carbs are long gone. When you work with Amy you will have strategies and learn nutrition principles that are nourishing, doable, sustainable, personalized and that yield results.

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