I have been searching for ideas on healthy meal ideas for Lizzie, David and Lucy. I received this guest post and had to share it with you! Let me know your thoughts in the comments – do you agree with it? Do you have anything you’d like to add? Thanks!
Guest post by Vanessa Burke
With all of the advertising and peer pressure our kids face during meal time, it can be hard to make the correct choices for them when seeking out the best nutritional options. It’s also easy to make the mistake of picking what is fast and convenient instead of wholesome because of our busy lifestyles. Because we lost focus as a society about what we put into our bodies, some negative things have happened. The Center for Disease Control says that childhood obesity rates have tripled over the last thirty years. In adults the rate of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer have plagued us like an epidemic.
We have known about the dangers of unhealthy eating for years. But by keeping track of what your kids eat and making smart decisions, you can stop the trend of obesity with your own family.
The most important meal of the day should start at home. Make sure your kids are eating enough food at breakfast to get them through the day. A good mix of protein from lean meat, oatmeal, and milk will keep them mobile throughout the day, and plenty of carbohydrates from cereal, bread, and fruit will give them enough energy to have a productive learning experience at school.
If you must spoil them with frosted cereals, donuts, or fatty meat products, make sure to do so sparingly so they will not become dependent on the addictive fats and sugars in such foods.
Lunch is the hardest time to monitor your kids. Many schools offer sodas, french fries, potato chips, and other processed food items which may make your child sluggish and tired for the rest of the day. By sending your child to school with a couple of dollars, you are relying on them to make the best choices for themselves, which is quite risky. The best way to control your child’s lunchtime options is to send them to school with the classic brown-bag lunch; a sandwich, fruit, and a viable snack option like a granola bar or popcorn.
If you are able to pick your kids up after school, have a snack prepared before you leave. Carrot and celery slices topped with peanut butter are an excellent and nutritious way to fuel your kids with vegetables and protein. Fruits like raisins and unsweetened dry fruits are easy if you are in a rush. If you can not pick up your kids after school and rely on daycare or other after school service, make sure to monitor what they serve and pack another snack if it you are worried.
Instead of sitting at separate television sets during the last meal of the day, try to eat as a family. Prepare a meal with all of the basic components; a protein, a starch, and half a plate of vegetables. By following this methodology ,recommended by many health professionals, you won’t just be looking out for your kids, but yourself and the rest of your family.
Monitoring what kind of food your kids consume is often a time-consuming and difficult task, but if you want to instill good habits into their lifestyle it is a good idea to start early.