Breakfast equals Brain Power for Kids



    VICTORIA, Sept. 10 /CNW/ - According to Sheryl Jeffrey, Corporate Natural
Living Coordinator with Planet Organic Market, "The best learning tool you can
supply your children with this new school year is a nutritious breakfast.
International studies have shown that children who eat a balanced morning meal
retain their studies more effectively than children who eat nothing or a
sugary, refined substitute." Over the past 25 years, studies show the number
of kids who actually eat breakfast has steadily decreased. Today, 19 to 40% of
children skip the most important meal of the day. Kids say there is not enough
time, feel too tired to eat, or there is nothing easy to make for breakfast.
Habitually skipping breakfast can lead to health troubles, especially for
children. Not only to obvious problems like obesity but studies also found
that skipping breakfast may also impair school performance.

    Improved School Performance Credited to Morning Meal

    Children who ate breakfast the morning of research tests performed better
in math problems and reading comprehension than those that did not. Studies
that compared breakfast eaters with non-breakfast eaters found on average a
10% difference in overall school performance. When questioned by researchers,
children who ate breakfast reported feeling better, having more energy and
feeling less anxiety in the classroom, which led to more participation in
class. Breakfast eaters were able to pay attention for longer periods of time
and able to remember more information.

    ADHD Kids and Breakfast: Critically Important

    Parents of children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder face
special challenges. Though only afflicting 5%, behaviour can be so disruptive
as to have long lasting effects on the child, their family and those they come
into contact with regularly. Planet's Sheryl Jeffrey points out, "Essential
fatty acids were proven effective in treating ADHD and other hyperactivity
disorders because they nourish the brain and nervous system. Raw nuts are a
great source of EFA's and kids love them added to their breakfast or as a
snack." Experts agree that a breakfast low in sugar and high in protein is the
best option for all children, but with ADHD children it can noticeably improve
their behaviour.

    Planet Organic Market Organic Granola

    
    (*)excerpt from Planet Organic Cookbook available October 2007
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    INGREDIENT:                                 MEASURE             METRIC
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Slow cooking oat flakes                     3 C.                750 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Slivered almonds                            1 C.                250 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Cashew pieces                               1 C.                250 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Coconut flakes, unsweetened                 3/4 C.              185 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Brown sugar                                 1/4 C.              65 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Sea salt                                    1/2 tsp.            2.5 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Pure maple syrup                            1/3 C.              85 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Canola oil                                  1/4 C.              65 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Dried cranberries or blueberries            1 C.                250 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Raisins                                     1 C.                250 ml
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  YIELD                         6 cups
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    METHOD

    Preheat oven to 250degreesF.
      -  In a large bowl combine oats, almonds, cashews, coconut, sugar and
         salt. Set aside.
      -  Whisk together maple syrup and oil and pour over oat mix. Divide
         mixture onto two baking trays and place in oven.
      -  Bake 1-2 hours, stirring every 20 minutes to achieve an even
         browning.
      -  When desired color is achieved, remove from oven and cool.
      -  Place in a large bowl and toss with desired berries and raisins.
      -  Store in an airtight container.
    

    Make Breakfast a Big Deal!

    Finally, Jeffrey suggests some options for today's busy families to get
their morning start. "Organic whole grain cereals, like oatmeal, also supply
much needed B complex vitamins which cannot be stored by the body and must be
replaced every day. Oats also supply fiber to keep your children regular and
help prevent infections. So make breakfast a big deal!"
    
      -  Organic Granola- many commercial varieties are available or for kids
         with allergies to consider, or make your own (*)recipe attached
      -  Bake muffins and freeze, take out a few each evening and they are
         good to go.
      -  Cut and bag fresh fruit for a portable healthy start
      -  Make an organic smoothie using their favourite flavours and fruits -
         add powdered supplements
      -  Make single size servings of yogurt easy to see at the front of the
         fridge
    

    (*)When you start with fresh 100% organic ingredients you can taste the
difference. Now, cooking with organics can be less a mystery and more of an
adventure. Planet Organic co-founder, Diane Shaskin, has gathered together
personal recipes, staff picks along with long-time deli favourites - all
focusing on health, flavour and organic ingredients.

    References

    Jennifer Dani, Courtney Burrill, and Barbara Demmig-Adams. The remarkable
    role in nutrition in learning and behaviour. Journal of Nutrition and
    Food Science. 2005.
    Roseanne Schnoll, Dmitry Burshteyn and Juan Cea-Aravena. Nutrition in the
    Treatment of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Neglected but
    Important Aspect. Journal of Applied Psychology and Biofeedback. 2003.
    James. Greenblatt. Nutritional Supplements in ADHD. Journal of the
    American Academy of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric. 1999.





For further information:

For further information: Robyn Quinn, APR, National Public Relations
Coordinator, Email: rquinn@planetorganic.ca; Planet Organic Market, (250)
370-0719, www.planetorganic.ca

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