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Breakfast
Involve your child in meal planning. / David Sucsy/Getty Images

Research shows that children who eat breakfast have higher grades and test scores and focus better in school. “When kids run out of the house without breakfast, there’s a greater chance they can run out of fuel earlier on,” says Bonnie Taub-Dix, author of Read It Before You Eat It and a registered dietitian. “Some kids then go on to make poor choices at lunch or may trade a healthier lunch for one that is unbalanced, and it could be that they don’t eat properly until dinnertime.” Here are some of her tips:

Plan the menu. Involve your child in meal planning. “Maybe they’d like some unconventional breakfasts — like the chicken they loved last night — and the right combo could be just fine,” Taub-Dix says. “Let them come up with some ideas — there’s a greater chance they’ll eat something that they helped create.”

Grab and go. The morning rush shouldn’t stop you from grabbing something to eat, but be sure to include protein and whole grains. Some of Taub-Dix’s favorites include Greek yogurt, almond butter on whole-grain crackers with raspberry jam or whole-grain toast with cinnamon sugar.

Eat breakfast at school. Many schools that serve lunch also serve breakfast. If your kids make it out of the house without breakfast or need a boost before a test, give them cash to grab something from the cafeteria, or ask the teacher if you can pack something for a midmorning snack.

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