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Friday, September 16, 2011

Breakfast and Nutrition

早餐吃的好, 午餐吃的饱, 晚餐吃的少.

Recently, Daddy participated in a breakfast forum organised by Asiaprwerkz and Nestle. He is curious about how nutrition plays an important part for a growing child, and why breakfast is important for everyone.

Daddy and Mummy got a small confession here, both of us are lazy.
As long as kids can fill their stomachs, we are not fussy with what they eat :p
..and Daddy felt so guilty after the talk keke.

Held at Seb's Bistro Rochestor, the event panel comprise of :
- Ms Gladys Wong (Chief Dietician at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital)
- Ms Annie Chew (President, Singapore Nutrition and Dietetics Association)
- Mr Lim Soon Hock (Chairman of Centre for Fathering and National Family Council)
- Mr Valerio Nannini (MD Nestle)
- Ms Leonny Atmadja (Blogger Mummy of three)

What did Daddy learn from the breakfast forum ?

- Parents normally "know" why nutrition and breakfast is important for kids, but the challenge is to reinforce this message to the kids.

- Leonny shared with us about her challenges to prepare breakfast and ensure her kids finish breakfast timely.
If kids are late, they have to explain to teachers. This might help kids "manage" their time better :)

- Breakfast defines whether our day starts on a solid footing, we need enough nutrition to get our brain stimulated. Gladys mentioned that some studies indicate that kids who enjoy breakfast will pay more attention and absorb more information during morning lessons.
To reinforce her point, she also mention that Maths should not be first lesson in school, as it requires a lot of attention from kids. If kids happen to skip breakfast, how can we expect them to focus?

- Everything in "moderation". Three glasses of milk contains our daily calcium requirement, but we do not have to literally drink three glasses at one go. This is only an exaggerated example to show moderation in food intake.

- Parents can be creative and enjoy some fun quiz time with kids too.
Gladys recommend parents to user Health Promotion Board (HPB) triangle (above) to ask kids about their dairy food intake patterns. Example, are we having enough sodium, carbo etc, or are we having too much donuts and sweet stuffs !

- when we sleep, our body is recuperating. Energy is used to repair body tissues. Mr Valerio highlighted why it is important to keep ourselves hydrated. Kids might need eight hours to have a good rest.

- if your kids are having strawberry and chocolate milk (which are sweeter than full cream), please rinse their mouth before sleep, otherwise it will lead to cavity issues next time

- Whole grain comprise Vitamins and Fibre, is a wholesome breakfast recommendation. Cereal adds constitution and helps with digestion and bowl movement.

- Interestingly Gladys shared with parents that Soya Bean (豆花) is RICH in calcium, but 豆花水 got no calcium ooops.

Besides nutrition, we also touch on other points of interest :

- Parents' involvement. Parental influence is critical for kids to pick up and cultivate "good" habits from young.

- If parents practice good habits, like sleeping early, eating together as a family, and encouraging healthy breakfast,kids will likely behave likewise.

- Gladys emphasize "routine" a few times to bring home her point.
What children do not See, they do not Miss. Simple but true !
Pei Lin (our coordinator) later highlighted another example of a family without TV. This might be bizarre to today's parents, but the family benefited by becoming more cohesive, as everyone is encouraged to speak and interact with each other !

- parents eat and children see, they perceive what we do (good and bad), and start learning subconsciously. So if we want our kids to enjoy their vegetables, Parents must sometimes "show" kids how they enjoy their Greens :0

早餐吃的好, 午餐吃的饱, 晚餐吃的少.
This is what the older folks will preach, but somehow we parents today forget to reinforce. Daddy will try to make an effort to ensure our kids will have a more nourishing breakfast, and healthier lifestyle..

It has to start with the parents :)



  1. Not a lot of people eat breakfast nowadays already... Sigh. Including me. Bad habit. :/

  2. I need breakfast, otherwise stomach grouching by 1000 (still growing haha)


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