Fresh strawberries herald the arrival of the summer months. This festive red fruit is a treasure trove of vitamin C and other essential nutrients your child needs for a healthy diet. Strawberries are also a good source of dietary fiber. Strawberries are irresistible to both the eye and the palate, making them the perfect finish to your child's lunch plate.
Strawberries for Nutrition
Kids may not find the nutritional value of strawberries a compelling selling point. But this fruit is loaded with vitamin C, a nutrient your child can only get from the food she eats. Vitamin C is essential for strong bones, teeth and muscles. Strawberry's vitamin C also helps scrapes heal whenever your little one takes a spill. A half-cup of sliced fresh strawberries gives your child her daily dose of vitamin C, along with B vitamins and the essential minerals potassium, calcium, iron and magnesium.
Strawberries for Health
Fiber is also a healthful feature of strawberries and other berries. Fiber is the stuff that makes your child feel full and stay full longer. Children who eat an abundance of fruit, vegetables and whole grains stay regular and have better digestive health. Your child gets 3 grams of dietary fiber per half-cup serving of strawberries. Strawberries are low in natural sugar, making them the perfect choice if you're concerned about your child's weight.
Strawberries have a tangy, sweet taste and need no help from your sugar bowl --- table sugar adds calories to your child's food but has no nutritional value. Entice your toddler with an eye-catching bowl of strawberries, blueberries and other "finger fruits" like bananas and peach slices. Older children may like a fruit kabob with strawberries, grapes, pineapple chunks and banana slices served with a dipping sauce made from low-fat vanilla yogurt. If your child likes frozen desserts, pair fresh strawberries with bananas and blend them with frozen vanilla yogurt and milk for a healthy, delicious shake.
Selection and Storage
Commercially frozen and canned strawberries lose some of their nutritional value, so serve your child fresh, ripe strawberries whenever possible. Strawberries that taste the sweetest are uniformly red in color, without any touches of yellow or green. Make sure the berries you select show no signs of softening, wrinkling or mold. Strawberries have a very brief life in your crisper, staying fresh for about a week. Save a taste of summer to enjoy during the colder months by freezing fresh strawberries on a cookie sheet. Transfer them to a freezer container or airtight bag.
Like This Article? Let Us Know!
- Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images