Don't Forget to Eat!
We thought about making this one less stringent, but, well, you really shouldn't skip meals—especially breakfast, the easiest meal of the day to skip. There are many reasons for this. It may be counter-intuitive, but you will actually eat less during the day if you always eat a healthy breakfast because you won't be hungry and tempted to snack and overeat throughout the morning. Eating breakfast will also jumpstart your metabolism in the morning, spurring your body to consume more calories; skipping breakfast has the opposite effect, as the lack of nourishment slows down your metabolism as your body struggles to conserve energy.
When they eat a regular breakfast, your kids could end up doing better in school as well, since they will have the energy they need to pay attention in class in the morning. If you are finding that your family doesn't have enough time for breakfast, wake up 10 to 15 minutes earlier. And plan the next day's breakfast before bed each night so kids know what to reach for in the morning.
Scheduled snacks are important too. We recommend one snack mid-morning and one snack mid-afternoon. Snacks after dinner should be avoided in general; if you do allow them after dinner, make sure they are fruits or vegetables.