Tag Archives: back to school

Courtney’s Healthy Back to School Recipes from WGN

“It all starts and ends with your mind,” Courtney Crozier said on WGN’s Mid-Day News this morning. “If you don’t change your mind you’re not going to change. The moment that you do change your mind everything in your life gets better.”

Down more than 230 pounds since her journey began well before her time on Biggest Loser 11, Courtney is living proof that small changes add up to major changes.

Watch her appearance on WGN’s Mid-Day News to learn some of her favorite ways to keep hunger at bay with healthy snacks. These are all perfect to keep in mind as the kids head back to school. Whether packing their lunch, yours, or trying to get breakfast done in a hurry, these are healthy ways to stay full, satisfied, and give your body what it needs to perform.

Click here to watch the video and get the back to school recipes from Courtney.

Join Courtney’s Summer Challenge right here at DIR.

Yoga for School Teachers

Teachers are educators, leaders, pseudo parents, heroes, friends and mentors. Their jobs are often thankless, yet teachers are those amazing people that help shape the future of our world.

Being a teacher takes a tremendous amount of commitment, and commitment requires a tremendous amount of energy. Presenting concepts, math equations and scientific theories while continuing to be a positive influence in the classroom can be challenging for the tired and overworked educationalist.

Thankfully, the magic of yoga can come to the rescue to refresh, rejuvenate and inspire before burn out ensues.

Bank a second wind well before you might actually need it with these simple suggestions that can be practiced in the teacher’s lounge or in the classroom.


Back to School Yoga

It is that time of year when backpacks, notebooks and pencil bags line the shelves. New clothes hang with anticipation in the closet and old shoes are handed down to make room for the growing feet of adolescents.

Going back to school after a summer of fun in the sun can be an anxious time for school kids. The unfamiliarity of a new classroom, new friends and harder classes can zap enthusiasm in a heartbeat.

Maintaining a zest for learning can be challenging for kids and adults alike. Thankfully there are things we can do to keep our interest up. The number one most important thing we can do at back to school time is reduce stress, and yoga can help.

The following is a list of suggestions for simple yet effective yoga poses that can be done in the morning before heading off to the school bus. Saving just five or ten minutes during the bustling hours before the bell rings can mean better grades, healthier friendships and happier parents!


Gluten Free Lunch Box Snacks Kids Will Love

In some ways it feels like summer has just begun. However, a walk through a supermarket will tell us that back-to-school season is just around the corner. The aisles are full of school supplies, backpacks, and new lunch boxes.

It’s just a few weeks before our kids will need their nutritious lunches packed every morning. This can be a real challenge as a parent. The challenge is much greater for those who have children with food allergies. Thankfully, many new products are available to make lunchtime easier for these children. For kids with gluten allergies or Celiac disease, their choices for fun lunchtime snacks were typically very limited. Today, there are several great products available. Not only are they gluten free and nutritious, but they are fun. No longer do our little ones with allergies have to be left out, eating their plain snacks.

These are just a few of the great tasting, gluten free, lunch box snacks to put on your school supply list.


Easy Back to School Breakfast Options

Happy Back to School Day! For many parents across the country, it’s the beginning of a brand new school year. It’s time to start new habits, and one of the best things that you can do to help your children get the day off to a good start is to serve a healthy breakfast. I don’t know about you, but when I mention healthy breakfast to my kids, they often think of sticks and twigs and other unappetizing options so I have to get creative with my before school meals.

Instead of a bowl of cold cereal, which often won’t fuel your child until the end of first bell, make one of these amazing choices, high in protein and flavor.

  • Create your own trail mix by mixing dry, high fiber cereal, nuts, seeds, dried fruits and  roasted edamame for protein. An added bonus is you can toss some of this mix into a baggie and pair it with a drinkable yogurt, like those from Stonyfield Farms, to make a travel-friendly and filling breakfast. (more…)

Video Series: How to Pack a Healthy School Lunch

With back to school kicking off around the country, a healthy lunch may, or may not, be on your supply list. With a few kids of my own, I’m all too familiar with sending them off to school each day with a lunchbox that satisfies my desire for nutrition and their desire for delicious.

In this video series, I explain how you can pack a healthy lunch that does the same for you and your kids, including beverages, sandwiches, fruits and vegetables and even snacks that everyone will love!

Sandwiches: The Main Goodness of the Packed Lunch

Check inside any packed lunch and, most often, you will see a sandwich. A sandwich fits the criteria of a packed lunch well – it’s portable, compact and filling. The ingredients that you choose to create your sandwich can make your meal healthy and satisfying or cause blood sugar spikes and dips. Here are some great options to keep in mind: (more…)

8 Ways to Avoid the Sandwich Lunch Rut for Back to School

This year, make lunch not only part of the back to school thrill, but something your kids can look forward to each day! Instead of dreading yet another PBJ. Let them pick out a reusable, insulated lunch container (they make some that match their backpacks!) and let them help plan lunches at the start of each week. Their involvement will ensure everything gets eaten, because they helped choose it, and will heighten their interest in nutrition, as you teach the difference between healthy foods and junk foods.

Don’t let yourself or them fall into the sandwich rotation rut. All of these ideas work just as well for your child’s lunch box as they do yours.

Taco Kit: Send them with a build-your-own-taco kit complete with shredded low-fat cheese, chopped tomatoes, shredded lettuce, seasoned turkey meat or shredded grilled chicken, and soft whole grain tortillas. Include salsa or a scoop of homemade guacamole on the side.

Little Dippers: Pack protein-rich hummus with a variety of whole grain pita chips, red bell pepper slices, sliced cucumbers and carrot and celery sticks. It’s all the protein and veggies they need for a deliciously different lunch. (more…)

How to Prepare Healthy School Lunches

Guest Blogger Terra Wellington is an actress and the author of The Mom’s Guide to Growing Your Family Green: Saving the Earth Begins at Home (St. Martin’s Press). In her book, she outlines a Green School Action Blueprint for making greener and healthier changes at your child’s school. terra wellington

For many years I’ve been concerned about the quality of the school lunches fed to my children.

A charter school was my children’s home away from home for several years, and that school didn’t have a cafeteria, so all kids had to bring a lunch from home – one of the best options for most families if you want to improve your child’s lunch diet.

But now that my children are in the regular public school system, it has brought back lots of childhood cafeteria memories … praying my milk wasn’t sour in second grade, shamelessly wishing for tater tots seven days a week as a fourth grader, and watching friends mop up oil off the top of pizza slices with an extra napkin in high school. (more…)

Healthy Back to School Week

healthy back to schoolParents, teachers and kids across the country are gearing up for the most bittersweet time of year – back to school. A friend’s first-grader summed it up well when she was told it was the first day of school: “You mean I have to go back?!” Yes, you have to go back. And no amount of fresh crayons, pencils and new outfits will cover up their disdain as they drag their feet back into those classrooms.

This week at DietsInReview.com, the focus was on the kids, with Healthy Back to School Week. We invited moms, yoga instructors, chefs, nutrition experts and more to share their insights on ways to fuel kids’ minds, bodies and souls as they transition back into the classroom and prepare for a strong year ahead.

Whether it’s packing a healthier sack lunch, advocating for more nutritious school food, putting more fitness into their days, or helping them de-stress, we’ve got it covered.

Healthy Breakfast Recipes for Back to School

Send them out the door with the most important meal of the day. Make these days in advance and have on-the-go fuel the rest of the week. – Rebecca Bailey at Life With Boys (more…)

How to Help Your Overweight Child at Home and School

The week of August 10 is Healthy Back to School Week at DietsInReview.com.

school girlWendy Reinhardt Kapsak, MS, RD is director of wellness for the International Food Information Council (IFIC). Her work includes conducting consumer and health professional research, developing communication workshops for opinion leaders, speaking at conferences and workshops, and communicating with journalists and the media. Wendy is a certified fitness instructor and has also had a private practice specializing in weight management. She lives in St. Louis with her husband Dan and two sons, Drew and Evan.

For many parents, dealing with an overweight child can be a delicate issue. When it’s time to go back to school, the challenge of balancing healthy eating habits and exercise while building their self esteem can often seem overwhelming. Here are a few steps parents can take at home to get their kids off to a great start at school.

1. Be a role model: Children learn by what they see and observe, so set a good example. Plan family time that focuses on fun while enjoying food and exercise/physical activity together. (more…)