8 Easy Ways To Cut Sugar From Your Kid’s Breakfast

8 Easy Ways To Cut Sugar From Your Kid’s Breakfast

Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links in this blog post are affiliate links from Amazon Associates. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. I recommend these products either because I use them or because companies that make them are trustworthy and useful.

Experts say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but when it comes to the foods kids are eating—things like cereal, muffins, pastries and sweet extras like jam, juice and sweet spreads—most make up a good portion of the sugar in their diets. 

In fact, according to a 2017 survey by Public Health England, an executive health agency, children get half of their daily allowance of sugar at breakfast.

What’s more, 84 percent of parents surveyed thought the foods they fed their kids were healthy.

When it comes to serving up a healthy, low-sugar breakfast, there are plenty of options if you plan ahead and think creatively.

Here, learn the types of foods to focus on, those to avoid and ways to cut sugar from your kid’s breakfast.

1. Read labels


When purchasing cereal and other breakfast foods, the best thing you can do is read labels and compare brands.

So-called healthy cereals that post claims like “a good source of fiber,” “gluten-free,” and “made with real fruit,” can be just as high in sugar as kid-friendly cereals that have bright, artificial colors and marshmallows, for example.

As the new Nutrition Facts labels continue to be rolled out, it will be easier to decipher labels and understand how much natural and added sugars are in the foods you buy.

Need more tips about what to look for and what to avoid in breakfast cereals? Check out my blog post, How to Pick a Healthy Cereal for Your Kids.


2. Pick protein


When you think breakfast, toast, waffles, pancakes and bagels usually come to mind.

If you’re looking for ways to cut sugar from your kid’s diet however, think about high-protein options which will also satisfy their hunger until lunch.

Serve hard boiled eggs or a frittata which can be made ahead of time and save you time in the morning, or incorporate leftover vegetables into a hash with eggs. You can also think out of the traditional breakfast box altogether and serve high-protein options like beans, tempeh or tofu.

Add a healthy fat like avocado and you have a low-sugar, filling breakfast.


3. Serve dessert for breakfast


Keep breakfast interesting by serving dessert—seriously! Think low-sugar pudding, breakfast cookies and baked oatmeals.

Superfood Triple Berry Chia Pudding from Skinnytaste.com and Paleo Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding from AgainstAllGrain.com are two recipes I like.

4. Make your own parfaits


Yogurt can be a healthy breakfast option for kids, but most yogurts, whether they’re marketed to kids or adults, are loaded with sugar.

To cut sugar from your kid’s breakfast, read labels carefully for hidden sugars like fruit juice, cane sugar, sucrose and high-fructose corn syrup.

A safe bet is to stick to plain yogurt or plain Greek yogurt, and add fresh or frozen berries, vanilla extract and nuts, seeds or a low-sugar granola for healthy breakfast that’s high in fiber and protein.

If you’re tight on time however, there are some healthy, low-sugar yogurts. I like Siggi’s or plant-based yogurts like Lavva.

For more tips about what to look for in yogurt, check out my blog post How to Pick a Healthy Kids’ Yogurt.


5. Make over muffins

 

Muffins may seem like a healthy breakfast especially those made with fruit and vegetables and topped with nuts, but most muffins are sugar bombs.

For healthier options, look for recipes for low-sugar muffins or egg muffins you can make yourself.


6. Nix the juice

 

Orange juice, apple juice and organic fruit juice boxes are marketed to parents as a healthy option, but they’re also significant sources of sugar.

In fact, a 3.5 ounce cup of apple juice—about one serving for kids—has 9 grams of sugar

If you still want to offer your kids juice, try making green juices with 80 percent vegetables and 20 percent juice. Also, watch portion sizes—4 to 6 ounces is fine.

7. Swap jam and jelly for whole fruit

 

Jam, jelly and fruit preserves seem like a healthy breakfast option—they’re made with fruit after all—but they’re actually highly concentrated sources of sugar.

Although store-bought options are fine when you’re in a rush, a better idea is to serve whole fruit: sliced, smashed or blended.

Whole fruit is also a great swap for honey and maple syrup.


8. Make a green smoothie

 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 9 in 10 kids don’t eat enough vegetables.

Although it definitely takes a change in mindset, serving vegetables for breakfast is a great way to get more in your kid’s diet.

Although I don’t suggest you make smoothies to sneak vegetables, they can be an easy way to serve vegetables for breakfast and a low-sugar option.

On Sunday or the night before, set aside individual portions of green leafy vegetables and fruit, then add a protein source like almond butter and a healthy fat like chia seeds or flaxseeds and you have a healthy, low-sugar breakfast.

10 Ways To Get More Plant-Based Foods To Your Kid’s Diet

10 Ways To Get More Plant-Based Foods To Your Kid’s Diet

Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links in this blog post are affiliate links from Amazon Associates. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. I recommend these products either because I use them or because companies that make them are trustworthy and useful.

Whether your family are vegetarians, vegans, pegans or full-fledged meat eaters, getting more plant-based foods into your kid’s diet is one of the best things you can do for their health.

Plant-based foods are packed with the nutrition kids need for their growth and development.

Most plant-based foods also have filling fiber to satisfy their hunger and prevent constipation.

Recent studies show plant-based diets are also linked with a lower risk of type-2 diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol and obesity.

When you have picky eaters however, getting them to eat more vegetables, plant-based proteins and different types of grains can seem impossible.

With a few tips and tricks however, you can add more plant-based foods to your kid’s diet. Here are 10.

1. Start small

If your kids already don’t love beans, you’re probably not going to get them to eat black-bean soup, no matter how different it may look.   

Instead, start out by introducing small—even minuscule—amounts like a teaspoon of peas they can munch on before dinner when they’re most likely to be hungry.


2. Blend it up


Every morning, I make this really easy smoothie for my kids and I in my Vitamix: one cup of almond milk, 2 cups of spinach, 2 stalks of celery, one banana, and 1 tablespoon of chia seeds.

I like green smoothies for kids, not as a way to sneak vegetables, but to get a bunch of vegetables and other plant-based foods into one meal.

Making smoothies with your kids is also a great way to teach them about healthy eating. When kids pick what goes into smoothies and have a hand in making it, they feel empowered and excited to try what they made.

3. Take advantage of snack time


Kids love their snacks but most kids snack up to three times a day on foods like chips, cookies and other junk food, which nets a whopping 600 calories, a March 2010 study in the journal Health Affairs found.

If snack time is when your kid is hungry and most likely to eat, use it as an opportunity to get more plant-based foods into his diet.

Serve cut veggies with a bean dip or hummus, fruit with a nut butter, chia seed pudding, a muffin with almond flour and flaxseeds, or homemade trail mix with nuts, seeds and raisins.

4. Put fruits and vegetables in plain sight


Kids will eat what’s visible and accessible so keep healthy options front and center.

Keep a fruit bowl filled with easy options like bananas, apples and pears.

Also, when you get home from the grocery store, wash and cut up fruits and veggie and store them in glass containers in the refrigerator. Most grocery stores also have grab and go containers of fruits and vegetables that are already washed and cut up, making healthy eating a no-brainer.

5. Serve frozen fruit for dessert

Frozen fruit is a great way to get more plant-based foods into your kid’s diet and it may pack more nutrition than fresh. In fact, a June 2017 study in the Journal of Food Composition and Analysis found in some cases frozen produce is more nutritious than fresh that’s been stored in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Serve frozen fruit straight out of the package for snack time or add it to smoothies, yogurt parfaits or overnight oats. You can also blend it up with some almond or coconut milk for a delicious dessert.


6. Re-think recipes


When you do your meal planning, think about ways to swap meat for plant-based foods. Try zoodles, bean burgers, veggie burgers, black bean soup, vegetarian chili, or an egg “fried” rice with edamame.

7. Try new whole-grains


Most kids will eat pasta and rice but those with whole grains are the best. Whole grains provide vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. Some whole grains like quinoa, (a seed), provides both protein and fiber.

Make meals interesting by switching up the grains you serve. Instead of brown rice, experiment with new types like farro, teff and millet.


8. Make “fries” and “chips”


There are so many ways to transform plant-based foods into foods kids already love like fries and chips.
Carrots can be sliced thin and roasted in the oven. Check out this recipe for carrot chips on Weelicious.

Or try kale chips, jicama and parsnip “fries,” or roasted chickpeas.


9. Make a vegetable hash

Kids may not eat leftover vegetables for breakfast but if they like hash browns, try substituting grated veggies like squash, zucchini, carrots, sweet potatoes or parsnips into a hash and serve them with eggs.

10. Think finger foods

Kids love finger foods and when you serve plant-based foods, there are plenty of options.

Offer small pieces of fruits and vegetables, beans, lentils, edamame, small cubes of tofu or tempeh, nuts, seeds, and avocado.

6 Crazy Easy Ways To Get Your Kids To Eat Healthy

6 Crazy Easy Ways To Get Your Kids To Eat Healthy

Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links in this blog post are affiliate links from Amazon Associates. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. I recommend these products either because I use them or because companies that make them are trustworthy and useful.

All parents want their kids to eat healthy, but when it comes to actually making it happen, most are left feeling frustrated, stressed out and exhausted.

Perhaps you’ve tried to make vegetables into fun shapes or works of art.

Or you’ve pureed and snuck them into meals.

I bet you’ve also begged, bribed and negotiated with your kids but all of your efforts fell flat.

Although it can be really frustrating to get your kids to even take a bite, it actually doesn’t have to be.

Here are 6 crazy easy ways to get your kids to eat healthy.

1. Start early


If you have an infant, making homemade baby food and exposing him to a wide variety of flavors and textures is an almost sure-fire way to get him to enjoy eating healthy now and throughout his life.

In fact, studies show that children like and consume foods that are familiar to them and the earlier and more foods they’re exposed to, the healthier their diets will be.

I’m convinced that’s one of the reasons my kids eat foods like lentils and broccoli today because I served them up regularly from the moment they started solids.

2. Give kids choices


Whether it’s a toy, a favorite pair of shoes, or which apps they’re allowed to use, kids love choices and food is no different.

Food choices make kids feel empowered and in control—even when you’re the one calling the shots and deciding which foods to buy and when to serve them.

I’d argue that it’s the lack of choices at meals that makes them such a big power struggle with our kids.

While I’m not suggesting you let your kid decide what he’ll eat for dinner, you can give him plenty of opportunities to make choices you both can live with.

For example, offer broccoli and cabbage and let him pick one or both. Or put out a few types of vegetables for him to choose from and do a make your own pasta or taco night.

3. Go shopping together

Another way to give kids choices is to bring them to the grocery store or the farmer’s market and let them pick out a new vegetable they’d like to try.

When you come back home, wash, prepare and cook it together.

They’ll be more like to eat (or at least try) what’s being served because they had a say and a hand in making it.

4. Get cool gear

Teaching your kids how to cook is an easy way to get your kids to eat healthy.

According to a November 2014 review in the journal Preventing Chronic Disease, kids who cooked at home or took cooking classes consumed more fiber-rich foods and fruits and vegetables, were more willing to try new foods, and had an increased confidence in their ability to prepare meals.

What’s more, a May 2018 study in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior  found young adults who had cooking skills and felt confident in the kitchen were more likely to be healthy eaters. 

One of the best ways to make cooking with your kids fun is to get some cool gear.

Whether it’s a kid’s personalized apron, a chopping board and safe, kid-friendly knives, or a cool chef’s set, your kids will get excited about cooking.

5. Make smoothies or juices


I don’t advocate for hiding vegetables in meals, but making green smoothies or juices is a great way to get several servings of fruits and vegetables into your child’s diet and because they’re green, it’s a non-sneaky way to get your kids to eat healthy.

Even better—let your kid choose the types of green vegetables and fruits and let them help you blend it up.

6. Keep it small

When you were a kid, how likely were you to sit down to an entire plate of asparagus—or worse—Brussels sprouts and eagerly eat it up?

I didn’t think so.

Although it’s true that kids don’t eat enough vegetables, it’s unrealistic to expect kids, especially toddlers, to eat an entire portion of a new food, or a food they’ve previously shunned.

Kids need to have the freedom to smell, taste and explore foods without feeling pressured so serve a teaspoon of broccoli florets or a few baby carrots, for example.

Stay consistent and continue to serve small portions at every meal, every day, and eventually your kids may surprise you.

6 Reasons Cooking Can Save Your Kid’s Life

6 Reasons Cooking Can Save Your Kid’s Life

When it comes to cooking healthy, homemade meals, most people aren’t on board.

They either don’t like to cook, or think cooking is too difficult, too time consuming or isn’t worth the effort especially after factoring in work, kids’ after-school activities and sports, and everything else that has to get done each day.

In fact, according to data collected by Eddie Yoon, a researcher and consultant for the consumer packaged goods industry, a whopping 45 percent of people hate to cook and 35 are lukewarm about it.

Our dislike for cooking however, is surprising considered the surge in meal kit subscriptions, food delivery apps, restaurants who offer on-the-go ordering, the popularity of cooking shows and Tasty-style videos and the rise of cookbook sales in 2018.

Despite our near-obsession with food and cooking, Americans still spend more money eating out than they do on groceries.

Dining out and ordering in may be quicker, easier, and tastier, but the reality is that doing so is slowly killing our kids.

Not only are we facing a childhood obesity epidemic and more kids than ever are being diagnosed with type-2 diabetes, but studies show our kids will have a shorter life expectancy than older generations.

Fat or skinny however, all kids are at risk.

According to a May 2012 study in the journal Pediatrics, 37 percent of kids who have a normal weight have one or more cardiovascular risk factors like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high blood sugar.

One of the reasons kids are sicker than ever is because they’re not given enough opportunities to learn how to cook and actually see what a healthy meal looks like.

The truth is that cooking can save your kid’s life. Here’s why.

1. Cooking makes kids healthier—physically and mentally

Studies show kids who consistently eat meals with their families are healthier kids overall.

In fact, according to a February 2018 study in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, kids who share family meals together have higher fitness levels, drink less sugary soft drinks, and seem to have better social skills.

Studies also show that kids who eat with their families are less likely to have an eating disorder or become obese and family meals are linked to lower rates of depression, teen pregnancy, substance abuse, better grades and higher levels of self-esteem.

Conversations had around the table may even improve a child’s vocabulary and help them become more resilient.

2. Cooking puts an end to picky eating

If your kid is a picky eater, eating out may seem like an easy solution especially if the restaurant you’re dining in has a kid’s menu.

But feeding kids what they want instead of what they need only reinforces the picky eating pattern.

We tell ourselves (and others), “my kid will only eat X,Y, and Z,” or “there’s no way my kid will eat that,” and that’s exactly what ends up happening.

Dinner may not always be peaceful but when your kids eat a homemade meal and there are no other options, it’s one of the best ways to get them out of their picky eating behaviors.

The more opportunities kids have to enjoy healthy meals and the only choice is what’s being served, they’re more likely to at least try it.

3. Cooking shows kids what real food looks like

Instead of eating out where French fries is the side dish, meals aren’t served with vegetables and everything is smothered in cheese or a sauce, cooking at home gives kids plenty of opportunities to learn what real, fresh food and healthy, balanced meals actually look like.

Cooking means meals are healthier and portions are smaller

A December 2016 study in Nutrition Today found most items on kid’s menus at the top 200 restaurant chains in the U.S. contained 147 more calories than what experts recommend.

When you eat out with your kids, you could avoid the kids menu and instead order a salad and a healthy appetizer, for example.

But since most restaurant meals are 2 to 3 times larger than what they should be, chances are the portions will still be too large. What’s more, most restaurant meals are high in calories, sodium and unhealthy fats. 

Cooking at home lets you control the ingredients, the cooking method and the portion sizes.

4. Cooking strengthens family bonds

Life gets hectic when you have kids and families don’t spend nearly as much time as they’d like.

In fact, a March 2018 study commissioned by Visit Anaheim found Americans spend just 37 minutes of “quality” time together during the week.

The more time you spend together around the dinner table, the more opportunities there are to share stories, resolve conflict, share positive moments from your day and strengthen family bonds.

5. Cooking prepares kids for real life

You may not like to cook, but cooking is a life skill your kids will need, just like doing laundry and cleaning a home.

Sure, you can hire someone to do just about any errand or chore, but if you want to raise kids who are self-sufficient and not lean on mom or dad for everything, teaching them how to cook is key.

Teaching kids basic cooking skills like how to measure ingredients, chop vegetables, use appliances and follow a recipe, are skills that will carry them through life and ensure they’ll put their health first.

6. Cooking keeps kids with food allergies safe

If you have a child with food allergies, you know that going out to eat—or eating anywhere other than your home—is seriously nerve-wracking.

Although you’ll tell your server about your kid’s food allergies, ask the kitchen to use a clean pan and urge them to avoid cross contamination, anything can happen and unfortunately, you can’t put the onus on the restaurant.

When you cook at home, you don’t have to worry about food allergies, and you know your kid will be safe.

8 Supermarket Shortcut Foods To Make Healthy Eating Easy

8 Supermarket Shortcut Foods To Make Healthy Eating Easy

The new year always comes with the best intentions: eat healthier, work out more, get more sleep and cut down on all that stress.

When it comes to your kid’ health, perhaps you’ve made a commitment to stock your kitchen with healthy food, cook more and share more family meals together.

Those are all great New Year’s resolutions to have of course, but so often we find ourselves back to our old habits come February.

Between work, after-school activities and every other obligation you have, carving out time to plan, shop and cook gets really challenging.

With some healthy eating hacks and a few supermarket shortcut foods on hand however, you don’t have to rely on processed foods, ready-made meals and grab-and-go options to make sure your family stays on track.

Here are 8 supermarket shortcuts that will make healthy eating a breeze all year long.

1. Salad kits

My family has become hooked on a salad kit made with shaved Brussels sprouts, shredded cabbage, pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries. Not only is it healthy and delicious, but having a salad kit on hand helps us pull together dinner in minutes flat.

When choosing a salad kit, always read labels since many salad kits are high in calories, sodium and sugar and use low-nutrient greens like iceberg lettuce instead of dark leafy greens.

2. Spinach

High in iron, spinach is also a good source of protein, fiber, vitamins A,C,E, B6, folate, magnesium and calcium.

Pre-washed baby spinach (organic when possible), cooks super-fast and can be incorporated into almost meal you’re making.

Sauté spinach with olive oil and garlic, add it to soups, stews and stir-fries or incorporate it into a quiche or frittata. Raw spinach can be mixed with other salad greens or used for your morning smoothies or green juices.

3. Frozen fruits and vegetables

Since frozen fruits and vegetables are picked at their peak freshness and flash frozen, they may be healthier than fresh varieties. In fact, a June 2017 study in the Journal of Food Composition and Analysis found in some cases frozen produce is more nutritious than fresh that’s been stored in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Stocking your freezer with a variety of frozen options will help you pull together meals in no time. Add frozen veggies to pastas, omelettes, or a stir-fry and incorporate frozen fruit into smoothies and yogurt or serve it as dessert.

4. Beans

Beans are one of the healthiest foods for kids and make for a quick and easy meal.

Add canned beans to tacos, fajitas, soups and stews, serve them solo in your kid’s lunch box, or puree them into a healthy and delicious bean dip.

5. Tempeh

If you’re looking to add more plant-based protein sources into your meals, try tempeh.

With more than 5 grams of protein in every ounce, tempeh is also high in fiber and magnesium.

Since it’s made with fermented soybeans, tempeh is also a great way to get probiotics into your kid’s diet.

Marinate tempeh and bake it, slice it thin and sauté it with vegetables, or swap crumbled tempeh for meat in your favorite Mexican dishes.

6. Canned fish

One of the best supermarket shortcuts to help your family eat healthy is canned fish like salmon, sardines and anchovies.

Packed with protein, low in saturated fat and rich in micronutrients, fish is also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, which support kids’ brain health and memory.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommend kids eat fish 1 to 2 times every week, starting at age 2.

If your kids refuse to eat fish however, try non-sneaky ways to incorporate small portions into their meals. For example, serve canned salmon as a dip paired with cut up raw vegetables, top toasted whole-grain bread with a bit of anchovies, or add a few sardines to pasta dishes.

7. Edamame

An excellent source of protein, fiber, iron and magnesium, edamame (soybeans) are high in calcium: one cup of provides 97 milligrams.

Purchase edamame frozen or fully cooked and add it to rice dishes, soups and salads or serve it as a side dish. You can also serve edamame as an appetizer before dinner when kids are hungry and more likely to try new foods.

8. Quinoa

Quinoa, a seed, is high in both protein and fiber as well as B vitamins, which support the nervous system.

Quinoa is also a quick and easy grain that can be served for breakfast with fruit and cinnamon, mixed into a yogurt parfait or as a side dish for lunch or dinner.

10 Healthy Eating Hacks For 2019

10 Healthy Eating Hacks For 2019

Whether your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, get in shape—or nothing at all, the month of January is a great time of year to set new, healthy goals for your family.

Perhaps you want to encourage your kids to eat healthier, try new foods or leave behind their picky eating behaviors for good.

Just as other New Year’s resolutions don’t happen overnight, getting your family to eat healthy requires consistency, patience and simple, yet realistic, strategies to make it happen.

Here are 10 healthy eating hacks for the new year that will make it doable.

1. Make a list

Without a grocery list, it’s easy to be tempted by processed foods and convenience foods that can easily derail you. You may also end up buying too much food that goes to waste or find yourself resorting to unhealthy takeout when your refrigerator becomes empty mid-week.

Before you head to the grocery store, try to have a rough meal plan for the week and make a list of the foods and ingredients you’ll need.

You don’t have to plan out each meal perfectly, but as long as you have a general idea of what you’re going to make for dinner each night, and what you need to stock up on for all of your other meals, you’ll have plenty of options.

2. Prep ahead

If you can carve out an hour or two on the weekends to wash, prep and store your aromatics and fruits and vegetables, it will save you a ton of time during the week.

3. Take shortcuts

Buying pre-chopped ingredients may cost a bit more, but if doing so means you’re able to make healthy meals faster, then it’s totally worth it.

Most grocery stores have pre-chopped mirepoix, garlic, cauliflower “rice,” spiraled vegetables, and shredded Brussels sprouts that can shave off a ton of time making healthy meals.

4. Batch cook

I work full-time, write this blog and have two kids but I still manage to get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

I’m not a super-mom by any stretch of the imagination or a pro chef, but with bath cooking, I’m able to pull it off.

On Sunday and a few times throughout the week, I make large batches of vegetables, rice, quinoa, lentils, beans and hard-boiled eggs that can be used for healthy school lunches and dinners throughout the week.

5. Use an appliance

Cooking healthy meals can be time consuming especially if you have to chop vegetables or wait for rice to cook, for example. Luckily, there are so many appliances like the Vitamix, Instant Pot and slow-cooker to make it quick and easy.

6. Make sheet pan meals

When you’re rushing to get dinner on the table, you need fast, fuss-free meals.

Instead of using multiple pots and pans and making meals that require multiple cooking methods, make sheet pan meals. Choose your vegetables, add a protein, and roast everything together to cut down on cooking and clean-up time.

7. Assemble meals

Don’t like to cook? No problem. You don’t have to use a single appliance to pull together healthy meals.

Instead, assemble pre-washed bagged salad or try a salad kit and add a protein and healthy fat for a quick, easy and no-brainer meal.

8. Rely on frozen foods

Many types of frozen, microwave meals are high in calories, sodium and trans fat and low in fiber and overall nutrition, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use your freezer to get a healthy dinner on the table.

Make large batches of stews, soups, bean burgers and casseroles or double a recipe that can be frozen and reheated.

Also, stock your freezer with quick and easy options like frozen shrimp, vegetables and peas that can be used in several different meals. Frozen fruit can also be used in smoothies, added to yogurt or served as dessert.

9. Stock your pantry with canned food

When you’re short on time, canned food can be a great alternative to fresh.

Canned salmon, tuna, sardines and beans are all healthy, easy and versatile protein sources that can be paired with a salad or cooked vegetables.

10. Rethink dessert

Bribing kids with dessert to eat dinner or take a few bites of their vegetables may be effective, but it puts a sour taste in their mouths—so to speak.

When kids are told they’ll get dessert if they eat the healthy stuff, a tactic Dina Rose, PhD calls the dessert deal, it teaches them that dessert is more desirable than their meal.

A workaround is to let your kids have dessert but consider offering dessert choices that you can live with. In our family, dessert is usually fresh fruit but it can also be dried fruit, yogurt, or a homemade muffin, for example.

How To Safely Introduce Nuts To Your Baby

How To Safely Introduce Nuts To Your Baby

My kids were babies just a few years ago, but at that time parents were told to avoid offering peanuts, almonds and other tree nuts until they were toddlers and as late as 3-years-old.

The food philosophy was meant to prevent babies from developing severe and life-threatening food allergies.

Nearly 8 percent of children in the U.S. have food allergies and peanuts are the most common allergen, according to a 2018 study in the journal Pediatrics.

In a short amount of time a lot has changed however. Now experts say introducing peanuts and tree nuts early on when babies start solids can actually prevent food allergies.

In January 2017, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) endorsed new guidelines from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in an effort to reduce the amount of kids with peanut allergies.

The updated recommendations came after a 2015 landmark study, the Learning Early About Peanut (LEAP) trial, which found that early introduction of peanuts can prevent peanut allergies in kids who are considered “high risk,” meaning those who have eczema and/or an egg allergy.

As a result, the AAP now recommends parents with babies who don’t have eczema or food allergies can “freely” introduce peanuts between 4 and 6 months of age.

Babies with mild or moderate eczema can be introduced to peanuts and tree nuts at 6-months of age.

Those with severe eczema and/or an egg allergy should also be introduced to peanuts and tree nuts between 4 and 6 months of age and after they have started other solids without any reactions, but they should also have allergy testing done beforehand.

Knowing whether your child has a moderate or high risk for food allergies can be tough, so air on the side of caution and talk with your pediatrician first before introducing nuts into your baby’s diet.

Nuts are a healthy first food for babies

For infants without food allergies, nuts can be one of the best first foods for babies.

Nuts are an excellent source of protein, and are high in omega-3 fatty acids which supports brain and eye health, and vitamin E, a fat-soluble vitamin and antioxidant that protects cells from the damage of free radicals.

Here, learn how to safely introduce nuts to your baby.

Never feed your baby whole nuts

It goes without saying, but whole nuts are a chocking hazard for babies. The AAP says you shouldn’t introduce them into your baby’s diet until he can chew them well—probably around age 4 or 5.

Also, never feed your baby a spoonful of peanut butter or another nut butter, which is also a choking hazard.

Start slow

Once you get the green light from your baby’s pediatrician to introduce nuts into your baby’s diet, offer just a taste at first.

As long as your baby has no symptoms of an allergic reaction or an intolerance, you can gradually increase the amount the next time.

Offer a tiny taste

Peanut butter, almond butter and other types of nut butters are an ideal way to introduce nuts to your baby.

Since they’re so sticky however, make sure you mix a very small amount with yogurt, a vegetable or fruit puree or infant cereal. Blend it well and make sure the nut butter is super smooth and has a consistency your baby can handle.

Serve a spread of nut butter with finger foods

When your baby is ready for finger foods, spread a small amount of nut butter on toast, pancakes, or waffles or even soft fruits like bananas or pears.

Adding nut butter to finger foods is a great way to get protein, more nutrition and extra flavor into your baby’s diet.

Prepare a pesto sauce

Pesto is a healthy and delicious way to introduce nuts to your baby.

Since many types of store-bought pesto sauces are high in sodium however, make your own version with pine nuts, walnuts or almonds.

Add pesto to pasta, grain dishes, soups or vegetable purees.

Swap all purpose flour for almond flour

Using almond flour in your baking recipes is a great way to introduce nuts to your baby.

Almond flour has more protein than all-purpose flour, is gluten-free and quite tasty. Use it to make breads and muffins for your baby, but be mindful of the amount of sugar you use.

6 Tips To Manage Your Kid’s Food Allergies During The Holidays

6 Tips To Manage Your Kid’s Food Allergies During The Holidays

When you have a child with food allergies like I do, keeping them safe during holiday parties and family get-togethers can be challenging.

Between new types of foods, homemade dishes with secret ingredients and all those Christmas cookies, you’ll be laser-focused on what your kid can eat and what he must avoid.

Although managing your child’s food allergies can definitely be nerve-wracking, with some planning and a few simple strategies you can enjoy the holidays and keep your kid safe.

Here are 6 tips that will help.

1. Talk to the host

If you’ll be attending an event at someone else’s home, call the host and let them know about your child’s food allergies and what can happen if they accidentally ingest an allergen.

When you have a child with food allergies, the reality is that you are his biggest advocate.

Unless the host of the party has a child with food allergies, it’s unlikely that they’ll read food labels or even know how to read a label.

What’s more, most people don’t understand how serious an accidental exposure can be and may say a meal is safe, when it really isn’t.

While some hosts may go out of their way to check labels and read every ingredient they used, it’s always a good idea to ask what foods will be served so you’ll know what your kid will have to avoid.

2. Bring a safe dish and dessert

One of the best ways to keep your kids safe and make sure they’ll have something to eat is to bring a safe dish and a dessert that they and everyone else can enjoy, including guests who may have other dietary restrictions.

3. Supervise your kids

It goes without saying that if your kid is young, you must ask about the ingredients in every dish and choose foods carefully.

But since family and friends may give your kid something to eat without asking, it’s important to also watch your kids throughout the event too.

4. Talk with your kids

When kids are old enough to understand what it means to have food allergies, it’s important to talk to them about how to stay safe but without scaring them.

Make sure they know not to eat a food without asking you first and not to share foods with other kids who may also have food allergies.

5. Ask guests to bring a non-food item

When my daughter was 3-years-old, we attended a party at a neighbor’s house and while we were chatting, she tasted a dip that had nuts in it. Luckily, she only had hives and we gave her a dose of Benadryl, but it was a big wake up call to watch her more carefully.

If you’ll be hosting and grandma insists on bringing her famous cookies, there may not be much you can do. But if guests ask what they can bring, have a list of alternatives like a bottle of wine, another beverage, or festive napkins.

6. Plan non-food traditions

During the holidays, food is a big part of the festivities. But for kids with food allergies, they may feel left out if they can’t enjoy some of the food.

To take some of the focus off food, plan other activities or start new holiday traditions which will create magical memories your kids will remember for years to come.

5 Winter Superfoods for Kids

5 Winter Superfoods for Kids

The winter season lends itself to a wide variety of brightly colored vegetables bursting with flavor and packed with nutrition for your kids.

With more time indoors, winter is also one of the best times of year to experiment with new recipes, cook with your kids and give them plenty of opportunities to try—and even learn to love—new foods.

These 5 winter superfoods are chock full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, can be incorporated into most dishes and are so delicious your kids will ask for seconds.

1. Cabbage

Green leafy vegetables are some of the healthiest vegetables you can feed your kids, and cabbage (white or red) falls into this category.

Cabbage is a good source of calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and vitamins C, K, B6 and folate.

Roast cabbage, sauté it with some coconut oil, or add it to your favorite stir-fry for a healthy and delicious meal.

2. Sweet potatoes

Rich in vitamin B6 and potassium, sweet potatoes also contain 3 grams of fiber and 284 percent daily value of vitamin A per 1/2 cup—making them one of the best winter superfoods for kids.

Roast sweet potatoes, mashed them or slice and top with scrambled eggs for a quick and healthy breakfast.

3. Beets

I know what you’re thinking: there’s no way my kid will eat beets. Beets have been a tough sell for my kids too, but it’s still worth a try

A good source of iron, vitamin C, magnesium, folate and potassium, beets are also high in fiber.

I don’t advocate sneaking vegetables for the sake of getting your kids to eat them, but there are some ways to make beets more palatable.

Try making your own roasted beet hummus like this one from Minimalist Baker.

Or roast beets with other root vegetables for a filling and delicious side dish or incorporate them into a fresh green juice.

4. Carrots

Most kids like carrots—a good thing since they’re so nutritious.

Carrots are high in vitamins A, B6 and folate, C and K, as well as iron and potassium. They’re also a great source of fiber: a 1/2 cup has nearly 3 grams.

Carrots are also a really versatile vegetable. Serve raw baby carrots with hummus or black bean dip, roast them with a bit of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt, or add pureed carrots into soups, stews or make a carrot soufflé.

5. Parsnips

Sweet, savory and filling, parsnips are one of the quintessential winter superfoods for kids.

Parsnips are a good source of potassium and vitamins C, K and folate. With 5 grams of fiber in a 1/2 cup, they’ll satisfy your kid’s hunger and may cure constipation.

Roast parsnips, sauté them with some grass-fed butter and nutmeg or incorporate them into your favorite bread recipe for extra fiber and flavor.

6 Real Reasons Parents Don’t Feed Their Kids Healthy Food

6 Real Reasons Parents Don’t Feed Their Kids Healthy Food

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

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6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Most parents also know that the foods kids eat and the healthy habits they learn now will affect their health in the future.

If parents know all of this, then why do they still feed their kids junk?

For starters, let’s be honest: there are plenty of things we all know are good for our kids and us but we don’t always do them.

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

They know what it’s like to offer healthy foods only to have their kids turn up their noses at what’s being served or refuse to eat altogether.

Most parents also know that the foods kids eat and the healthy habits they learn now will affect their health in the future.

If parents know all of this, then why do they still feed their kids junk?

For starters, let’s be honest: there are plenty of things we all know are good for our kids and us but we don’t always do them.

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

They know that most kids don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables.

They know what it’s like to offer healthy foods only to have their kids turn up their noses at what’s being served or refuse to eat altogether.

Most parents also know that the foods kids eat and the healthy habits they learn now will affect their health in the future.

If parents know all of this, then why do they still feed their kids junk?

For starters, let’s be honest: there are plenty of things we all know are good for our kids and us but we don’t always do them.

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

They know more than 1/3 of children are overweight or obese.

They know that most kids don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables.

They know what it’s like to offer healthy foods only to have their kids turn up their noses at what’s being served or refuse to eat altogether.

Most parents also know that the foods kids eat and the healthy habits they learn now will affect their health in the future.

If parents know all of this, then why do they still feed their kids junk?

For starters, let’s be honest: there are plenty of things we all know are good for our kids and us but we don’t always do them.

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Today, grocery store shelves are still lined with these types of foods, but most parents know better.

They know more than 1/3 of children are overweight or obese.

They know that most kids don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables.

They know what it’s like to offer healthy foods only to have their kids turn up their noses at what’s being served or refuse to eat altogether.

Most parents also know that the foods kids eat and the healthy habits they learn now will affect their health in the future.

If parents know all of this, then why do they still feed their kids junk?

For starters, let’s be honest: there are plenty of things we all know are good for our kids and us but we don’t always do them.

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

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When I was a child growing up in the 80’s, many parents fed their kids frozen TV dinners, meals that came out of a box and processed foods that were fast and convenient.

Today, grocery store shelves are still lined with these types of foods, but most parents know better.

They know more than 1/3 of children are overweight or obese.

They know that most kids don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables.

They know what it’s like to offer healthy foods only to have their kids turn up their noses at what’s being served or refuse to eat altogether.

Most parents also know that the foods kids eat and the healthy habits they learn now will affect their health in the future.

If parents know all of this, then why do they still feed their kids junk?

For starters, let’s be honest: there are plenty of things we all know are good for our kids and us but we don’t always do them.

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

[/et_pb_text]
[/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

When I was a child growing up in the 80’s, many parents fed their kids frozen TV dinners, meals that came out of a box and processed foods that were fast and convenient.

Today, grocery store shelves are still lined with these types of foods, but most parents know better.

They know more than 1/3 of children are overweight or obese.

They know that most kids don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables.

They know what it’s like to offer healthy foods only to have their kids turn up their noses at what’s being served or refuse to eat altogether.

Most parents also know that the foods kids eat and the healthy habits they learn now will affect their health in the future.

If parents know all of this, then why do they still feed their kids junk?

For starters, let’s be honest: there are plenty of things we all know are good for our kids and us but we don’t always do them.

Life gets in the way and we each have our unique set of circumstances and struggles that can make putting our health and our family’s health first a challenge.

However, there are some common beliefs, habits and perceived obstacles parents face that prevent them from feeding their kids healthy food but can easily be overcome with a simple shift in perspective. Here are 6.

1. Healthy eating isn’t that big of a deal

When I talk to other moms about what they feed their kids, it seems that although they know healthy eating is important, they see it more as a short-term, this-would-be-nice- type of goal.

They know it’s important for their kids’ growth and development, but they don’t think it should be a priority 

True, raising kids who are kind, good people is paramount but if we want our kids to be healthy now and well into the future, we much equip them with the information and tools to get there.

2. Healthy eating is time consuming

Servings healthy meals definitely takes time to plan, prep and cook—more time than opening up a box of chicken nuggets or ordering take-out.

If you work, have multiple kids at home, care for an aging parent, and have other obligations, your time is even more limited.

A myth about eating healthy however, is that it’s too time consuming.

But nothing could be further from the truth. With meal planning, batch cooking and stickingto the basics, it is possible to serve kids healthy foods everyday and get dinner on the table (almost) every night.

3. Picky eating never ends

Most kids, especially toddlers, are picky eaters but I think a mistake parents often makei s thinking, once a picky eater, always a picky eater.

True, some kids have sensory issues or are extreme picky eaters because of an eating disorder, but most kids can be healthy, adventurous eaters.

When parents think there’s nothing that can be done about picky eating, they usually accommodate their kids by feeding them foods they know they’ll eat.

Yet this creates a cycle: kids eat the same foods over and over again and because they don’t get the opportunity to try new foods, they never do.

It’s important to remember that unless there’s an underlying issue, kids won’t starve and will eat when they’re hungry.

What’s more, when given plenty of opportunities to touch, smell, and taste a variety of foods, kids are capable of enjoying—even craving—healthy foods.

4. Parents don’t eat healthy

Environment plays a big role in raising kids who will accept and enjoy healthy foods.

According to a 2017 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a whopping 90 percent of adults don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables each day.

If parents don’t eat healthy, chances are, they’re not feeding their kids healthy either.

Eating healthy meals together, reaching for healthy snacks and modeling healthy eating habits are all great ways to get your kids to eat healthy too.

5. Sweets are what childhood is made of

In our society, sweets are synonymous with childhood.

In a recent commercial for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Michael Strahan stated something along the lines of, “kids should get candy, not chemo.”

I’m sure you have fond childhood memories of going to the candy store and enjoying your grandmother’s cookies after school. There’s nothing wrong with that, but whenwe think, they’re kids, let them enjoy, without paying attention to what and how much they’re eating, it could beproblematic.

Childhood is one of the most important times to make healthy eating a priority and teach those healthy habits because kids are growing and developing physically, mentally and emotionally.

Modeling for kids how to strike a balance between healthy foods and treats can also prevent them from becoming emotional eaters now and well into the future.

6. Picky eating power struggles are exhausting

Parenting is not for the faint of heart. It’s perhaps the hardest job you’ll ever have as you teach, guide and instill values into your children every day.

When you’ve got kids who are picky eaters, parenting becomes even more challenging.

You’re tired of throwing away meals that your kids barely touched, lunches that come home uneaten, and you’re over all the mealtime battles.

I think it’s safe to say all parents give in about something from time to time, but giving in all the time about meals puts your child in control of their health, when that’s actually our job as parents.

We can’t expect perfection (whatever that is), but we can do our best to set up our kids for a healthy future.

What is High-Fructose Corn Syrup?

What is High-Fructose Corn Syrup?

As a parent, you’re always hearing about the laundry list of ingredients and toxic chemicals you should avoid in your kid’s diet.

Things like artificial food dyes, GMO’s, pesticides, antibiotics, arsenic and one of the worst offenders: high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS).

But what is high-fructose corn syrup? And is it really that bad for your kid’s health? Here are answers to those questions and more.  

 

What is High-Fructose Corn Syrup?

In recent years, there’s been a lot of buzz about HFCS, but the artificial sweetener made from processed corn starch has actually been in use since 1967, when it was first introduced.

Like table sugar (sucrose), HFCS is made up of two sugar molecules: glucose and fructose.

Regular sugar is broken down by the enzymes in our digestive tracks and then absorbed into the body.

HFCS is also made up of glucose and fructose but since the two molecules are unbound, they don’t have to be digested and they’re absorbed into the body at a much faster rate, Mark Hyman MD, states in this article.

Enzymes are added to HFCS to convert some of the glucose into fructose so it has a higher fructose-glucose ratio, making it even sweeter than sugar.

High fructose corn syrup is big business in the U.S.

Since high fructose corn syrup is government subsidized, it’s cheap to make and profitable. According to a 2018 report by Zion Market Research, the global market for the sweetener is expected to be worth more than $5 million by the year 2024.

Manufacturers also use the sweetener since it offers more flavor, stability, freshness, texture, pourability, color and consistency in foods than sucrose, according to one study.

 

Which foods contain high-fructose corn syrup?

High-fructose corn syrup is used in sweet foods, processed foods and surprising foods you’d least expect, including:

  • Cereals
  • Canned fruit
  • Condiments
  • Desserts
  • Granola bars
  • Ice cream
  • Juice
  • Salad dressings
  • Sodas and sweetened beverages
  • Sports drinks
  • Soups
  • Yogurt

Is high fructose corn syrup bad for kids’ health?

Research suggests foods that contain high-fructose corn syrup can spike the blood sugar, lead to inflammation, type-2 diabetes, weight gain and childhood obesity, high triglyceride levels and heart disease.

A landmark April 2004 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition was the first to show a link between HFCS consumption and the obesity epidemic.

Yet a few years later, Barry M. Popkin, one of the study authors, pulled back on his theory, The New York Times reported.

Then in 2008, the American Medical Association (AMA), also came out to say that it’s unlikely that high fructose corn syrup contributes more to obesity or other health conditions than regular sugar, and there’s insufficient evidence to limit it or use warning labels on food.

Still, the debate around high-fructose corn syrup and its health effects persisted.

According to a February 2010 study out of Princeton University, rats with access to HFCS gained significantly more weight than those with access to table sugar, despite consuming the same amount of calories.

The same study also found that long-term consumption of HFCS led to abnormal increases in body fat, especially abdominal fat, and an increase in triglycerides, or fats that circulate in the blood stream.

Studies also suggest the ingredient is harmful to the liver.

According to a May 2017 study in the Journal of Hepatology, obese children and teens who had diets high in foods that contain fructose like soda, sweetened beverages and processed foods, had an increased risk for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

What’s more, 38 percent also had nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), a more chronic and severe form of fatty liver disease.

Does high fructose corn syrup contain mercury?

Studies show some foods with high-fructose corn syrup also contain mercury.

A January 2009 study in the journal Environmental Health found toxic levels of mercury in food samples containing high-fructose corn syrup.

Yet just a few months later, the Corn Refiners Association (CRA) announced that independent testing and expert review showed no detectable levels of the toxin in food samples with the sweetener.

The World Health Organization (WHO) classifies mercury, a toxic metal that has been linked to a host of health problems and can have adverse effects on a child’s nervous, digestive, and immune systems, as one of the top ten chemicals or groups of chemicals that are a public health concern.

Should you avoid high fructose corn syrup in your kid’s diet?

Although much debate continues to exist around HFCS and its harmful effects on our health, there’s no question that limiting any type of added sugars in our—and our kids diets—is ideal.

The demand for high-fructose corn syrup has been on the decline in recent years is promising, but it seems that we’ve replaced it with sugar. 

According to a 2017 report by the USDA, between 2015 and 2016, consumption of refined sugar increased by 6 percent.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say kids should get less than 10 percent of their total daily calories from sugar, yet most kids are getting much more.

Since foods that contain high fructose corn syrup also lack the nutrition kids need to grow and develop at a healthy rate, it’s one more reason to limit or avoid the sweetener altogether.

By focusing on real, whole, healthy foods instead, you can ensure your kids are getting the nutrition they need to be healthy now, and throughout their lives.

 

 

9 Healthy Holiday Tips for Your Family

9 Healthy Holiday Tips for Your Family

With countless opportunities to enjoy sweet, savory and decadent dishes at family gatherings, holiday parties and special events, combined with treats tempting us at virtually every store (food or otherwise), it’s no wonder most people overindulge during the holidays.

Blame it on food marketing, the societal draw or stress, but 87 percent of Americans say they have an increase in food cravings this time of year and 75 percent experience guilt after giving into their cravings, a recent poll found.

The holidays are meant to be enjoyed and food is a big part of that enjoyment, but overindulging from now until New Year’s Eve can cause weight gain, affect mood, interfere with sleep and make your family more likely to get sick.

With a bit of planning and some simple strategies however, you can enjoy all the season has to offer without all the pitfalls. Consider these 7 healthy holiday tips for your family.

 

1. Don’t arrive hungry

If you know your family will eat a large holiday meal later on in the day, you might be tempted to skip meals.

If you arrive feeling famished however, you’ll be more likely to overeat when the meal is served.

Skipping breakfast in particular is a mistake. Studies show people who eat breakfast, especially one that’s high in protein, eat less calories throughout the day.

Do your best to serve healthy meals and snacks at the same times you and your family usually eat.

The same goes if dinner will be served in the middle of the day, although you may want to have a snack instead of a meal. A combination of protein and fiber like celery sticks and hummus or an apple with almond butter is ideal.

2. Bake healthy

Between pumpkin pie, eggnog and all those Christmas cookies, there will be plenty of sweets to go around, but that doesn’t mean everything you make has to be high in calories, fat and sugar.

With a few simple substitutions, there are several ways to bake healthy during the holidays and still enjoy all the desserts.

Check out my healthy holiday baking tips here.

3. Bring a healthy dish

If you’ll be attending a holiday event at someone else’s home, offer to bring a healthy dish that everyone can enjoy.

If your kids have food allergies or someone in the family has specific dietary restrictions or preferences, bringing a healthy dish is also a great way to keep them safe and ensure they have something to eat as well.

4. Model healthy eating habits

You can teach your kids how to enjoy all the delicious food without going overboard by taking small, healthy portions, making choices about what goes on your plate and enjoying everything in moderation.

When most people are reaching for second and third portions, you can show your child that it’s possible to enjoy the food without stuffing your face.

5. Get moving

To help burn off excess calories, combat stress and keep everyone on an even keel, carve out time before or after a holiday celebration to do something active.

This can be as simple as a walk around the neighborhood, a game of catch in the backyard, an indoor dance party or a game of Twister.

6. Make sleep a priority

Irregular schedules and later-than-usual bedtimes can throw everyone in the family off schedule.

Without enough sleep, everyone will be more irritable and more likely to reach for food and make unhealthy food choices.

In fact, an August 2018 study in the Journal of Sleep Research found that kids who regularly fell asleep after 11pm were 2 to 3 times more likely to eat junk food at least 5 times a week.

8. Give kids a kids-sized plate

Kids don’t need the same size dinner plate as adults, and may end up eating more because of it.

Make sure your kid has a kid-sized plate or an appetizer plate to keep portions healthy.

9. Pay attention to hunger and fullness cues

When food is in abundance during the holidays, it’s easy to overeat. Paying attention to your hunger and fullness cues however, can prevent you from reaching for seconds.

If your kids tend to overeat on special occasions too, depending on their ages, you can talk to them about eating when they’re hungry and to stop when they’re not hungry.

Sure, there’s always room for dessert but teaching them how to recognize their hunger and satiety cues can prevent them from eating just because the food is there.

10, Strike a balance

Raising kids to be healthy eaters includes teaching them how to enjoy delicious food, not be deprived of it.

Allow treats, but also strike a balance by serving plenty of healthy, whole foods including plenty of vegetables when you’re not celebrating.