Back to School Healthy Lunch for Kids - Seaweed Suprise?

It’s back to school time and moms everywhere are looking for healthy lunches to pack for their kids. This year one brain boosting food is making a comeback – seaweed! The Wall Street Journal recently ran an article about the nutritional benefits of seaweed and how parents can get their kids to eat seaweed. The nutritionist quote in the article, Mary Gocke from the Center for Health and Healing in New York, offers these reasons for why sea vegetables such as seaweed make for the perfect, healthy food:

1.       Sea vegetables contain minerals, more minerals that any other food! Interestingly, they are exactly the same minerals that are found in our blood. They are excellent sources of calcium, iodine, and sodium.  They are good sources of folic acid, magnesium, iron, potassium, riboflavin and pantothenic acid.

2.  Sea vegetables contain iodine which is crucial for making thyroid hormones that regulate our metabolism, growth and development.  Child who are born iodine deficient have lower iQs, therefore, it is essential that women include sea vegetables as part of their food plan pre-conception, during pregnancy and while breast feeding.  Infant formulas contain iodine.

3.  Sea vegetables contain the plant compounds lignan and fucans that have cancer-protective and anti-inflammatory properties.
You might not think your kids will be very interested in seaweed, but you trying these recipes below just might change the whole family’s mind…

·         Nori Omelette – You don’t have even have to wait until lunch to feed your kids a brain boost meal, start with a nori omelette breakfast! Key ingredients: eggs, carrots, nori and onion. (v) (gf) (Nori seaweed comes pre-packaged and ready to eat in thin sheets and is commonly found in grocery stores nationwide)
·         Seaweed Pizza – who says pizza is unhealthy? Be creative with a nori pizza! Key ingredients: Whole wheat pizza crust with your choice of seafood, mozzarella cheese and sprinkled nori
·         Nori Wraps – A quick snack for your kids during recess. Key ingredients:  Nori, hummus, carrot stick and turkey and lettuce (gf)
·         N.A.T. (Nori, Avocado, Tomato) – BLT’s healthy cousin with the same satisfying saltiness and crunch. Key ingredients: multi-grain bread with tomato, avocado, nori, and low-fat mayonnaise (v)
·         Seaweed Soba – Children love spaghetti and meatballs, and they’ll love cold seaweed soba too (they can even eat with it with their fingers)! Key ingredients: cha soba, shredded nori and spring onion, make a sauce to accompany with soy sauce, ginger, and shitake mushrooms (v)



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