(Family Features) - It seems that parents are on a continuous hunt for healthy foods that kids will actually eat. One of the simplest solutions is to choose soyfoods as the basis for snacks and meals.
Great tasting soyfoods provide essential iron, calcium, potassium, fiber, and high-quality complete protein for growing kids and adolescents. There are a lot of soyfoods that come from the humble soybean - soy dairy-free frozen desserts, soy yogurt, soy pasta, soy chips, soy nut butter, whole soybean nutrition bars, and soy crumbles (meat alternatives) are just a few of the options available.
Soyfoods are rich in the nutrients kids need and can be used to promote a healthy diet that includes plant-based foods. Most soyfoods contain no cholesterol and a minimal amount of saturated fat. Soyfoods do provide healthy fats, which help support heart health.
Soyfoods also provide variety to the diets of children who have certain food allergies. Children who are lactose intolerant or allergic to milk protein can pour soymilk over cereal or enjoy soy non-dairy frozen desserts. Those with peanut and nut allergies can try a soy nut butter and jelly sandwich or roasted soy nuts as a snack. Whole soybean and fruit bars and soy chips can be a treat for kids with wheat allergies.
Here are some other kid-friendly ways to bring soyfoods into your meal routine:
- Silk, Westsoy, So Nice, and Soy Dream soymilks are great options for low-calorie, protein-packed beverages that taste great and are cholesterol-free.
- For a great quick lunch, try heating up Boca Chik'n Nuggets. They are an excellent source of protein, have no cholesterol, are a good source of fiber, and have 55 percent less fat than traditional chicken nuggets.
- Soy smoothies are also a great snack. Let kids choose which fresh or frozen fruits to mix together and then blend with one cup WholeSoy® yogurt. Not only are they getting the health benefits from fruit but they're also getting the protein and calcium they need to grow.
- Zensoy soy puddings are available in chocolate, vanilla, banana and chocolate/vanilla swirl, and provide a delicious on-the-go treat.
- All natural SOYJOY® whole soybean and fruit bars are a healthy and tasty after school snack.
- Tofurky offers great deli alternatives. You can pack a delicious sandwich without the nitrates or MSG. Tofurky deli slices come in a variety of great flavors too.
- House Foods and Nasoya make great tasting tofu. Try cubing firm tofu to add to your next stir-fry. It absorbs all the great flavors and tastes delicious.
Find more ideas on how to incorporate soy into your family's favorite recipes in the Recipe Section on www.soyfoodsmonth.org.