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Stop feeding your kids Froot Loops. It's time to get your kids eating well and feeling healthy, says Jennifer Thakkar. A certified holistic health counselor, Thakkar comes right to your house with her stack of yoga cards, activity books and pictures of, among other things, fruit smoothies (good) and doughnuts (not good) to get children up and moving, and thinking about what they eat.
What does Thakkar recommend for healthy snacking during the endless days of summertime? Most important, she says, is to get rid of prepackaged snack foods full of refined ingredients and opt instead for whole foods. Below you'll find a list of her favorites, but not to worry, she's no nutrition Nazi. "Doughnuts are fine," she says, "every once in a while." Fresh sliced apples or bananas spread with nut butters
Apples with a drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of cinnamon
Dried apricots, cranberries, blueberries, papaya, bananas and raisins
All kinds of nuts, including almonds, walnuts, and pumpkin or sunflower seeds
Snack bags filled with granola
Rolled-up leftover whole-grain pancakes from breakfast spread with apple butter
Fruit smoothies made with vanilla yogurt
Homemade muffins or Jennifer's Healthy Cupcakes (see below)
Jennifer's Healthy Cupcakes
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup organic cane sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened organic applesauce
2 large organic eggs
1 1/2 cups whole-grain pastry flour (or substitute brown rice flour)
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 medium organic carrots, grated
1/2 medium organic zucchini, grated
1/2 cup organic cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl, beat the oil with the sugar and the applesauce. Add eggs.
In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add to the liquid ingredients. Fold in carrots and zucchini.
Spoon into muffin cups, filling three-quarters full. Bake 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
For the frosting, beat the softened cream cheese together with the maple syrup. Ice the cupcakes with a blunt knife. Makes 12 cupcakes.