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.

5 Reasons Why Healthy Eating Make Kids Happy

5 Reasons Why Healthy Eating Make Kids Happy

You already know that feeding your kids healthy foods is important for their growth and development and overall health and wellness, but can healthy eating make kids happy too?

There’s no doubt that food is medicine and raising kids to eat healthy can prevent childhood obesity, type-2 diabetes and a long list of chronic health conditions plaguing our nation.

When it comes to mental health and conditions like anxiety, depression and ADHD, many doctors are quick to prescribe a pill.

Medications may be necessary and can be life-saving for kids, but research shows a child’s diet can also make a big difference when it comes to mood, mental health and happiness.

Here, read on for some of the reasons why healthy eating makes kids happy.

1. Healthy eating supports gut health and the brain

When we hear the term microbiome, we often think gut health, but the microbiome is actually a vast ecosystem made up of 100 trillion microorganisms, or microbes, that live in and on our bodies.

These microbes are made up mostly of bacteria but they can also include fungi, viruses and other types of tiny organisms.

The gut microbiome specifically, has received a lot of attention in recent years because researchers have made important discoveries about its link to the brain.

In fact, the gut is often called the second brain because of the strong pathways along the gut-brain axis.

The enteric nervous system, which directs the function of the GI system, has 30 types of neurotransmitters and 100 million neurons.

So although we often think the brain is entirely responsible for mental health and mood, experts say the gut has a lot to do with it too.

Suffice to say, optimizing the gut with foods, especially those rich in probiotics, can help the brain.

2. Healthy eating improves sleep

Although most parents agree that sleep is important for their child’s health and well-being and performance in school, most kids fall short, a 2014 poll by the National Sleep Foundation found.

Curbing the electronics, sticking to a consistent sleep schedule and leading by example are all key, but experts say gut health also has a lot to do with the quality of sleep, which can affect a child’s mood.  

As previously mentioned, a ton of neurotransmitters are found in the gut, including serotonin—about 95 percent worth!

Often dubbed the happy chemical, serotonin is also a building block for melatonin, the hormone that regulates sleep. What’s more, there is 400 times the amount of melatonin in the gut than there is in the brain.

3. Healthy eating can prevent depression

The increase in children with anxiety and depression in the U.S. is alarming.

According to a June 2018 study in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, between 2007 and 2012 the amount of children between ages 6 and 7 with anxiety increased by 20 percent while those with depression increased by 0.2 percent.

There are a lot of factors that play into a person’s propensity to develop anxiety and depression like genetics and family history, trauma and environment but diet also plays a role.

According to a large cohort study published in October 2013 in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, kids exposed in utero and during early childhood to junk food and those who lacked healthy foods were at an increased risk for developing anxiety and depression while they were still young.

Experts say healthy eating however, can help ward off these conditions.

Take the SMILES trial published in January 2017. It’s important to note that the study was conducted in adults, so it’s unclear if the same results could be replicated in kids.

Still, the study found that 30 percent of people with depression who followed a Mediterranean diet for 12 weeks reversed their depression, compared to only 8 percent of those in the control group who didn’t change their diet and only received social support.

4. Healthy eating is linked to better self-esteem

 

A December 2017 study in the journal BMC Public Health found healthy eating is associated with better self-esteem and fewer emotional and peer problems, such as bullying, in kids between ages 2 and 9.

Interestingly, kids had the same boost in self-esteem whether or not they were overweight.

On the flip side, when kids have strong self-esteem, they’re also likely to make healthy food choices, the same study found.

5. Healthy eating can help kids with ADHD

 

Approximately 11 percent of kids between ages 4 and 17 are diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

While experts say foods can’t cause ADHD, processed foods, artificial food dyes and sugar may worsen symptoms.

It also seems that eating a whole foods diet can help to support the health of a child with ADHD. In fact, a February 2011 study in The Lancet found 78 percent of children who followed a “restricted elimination diet,” which consisted of real, whole, unprocessed foods, experienced an improvement in their symptoms.

Have you found eliminating certain foods and changing your child’s diet improved his mood? Let me know in the comments.

 

6 Natural Remedies To Ease Kids’ Tummy Aches

6 Natural Remedies To Ease Kids’ Tummy Aches

When my daughter complains that she has a stomachache, the first words out of my mouth are always, “are you going to vomit?!”

I know no one likes dealing with a kid who is vomiting, but when I see someone else getting sick, I start gagging myself.

Most of the time however, her stomach hurts because she ate a bag of chips, too many sweets or even went overboard on fruit, despite my best efforts to teach her about portion control.

Tummy aches are a surprisingly common complaint for kids. According to a May 2016 study in the journal American Family Physician, about 9 percent of kids’ doctor visits are due to stomachaches.

Most of the time, they’re mild and short-lived but if your kid has tummy aches that seem severe or persist, checking in with your pediatrician is always a good idea.

An infection, food allergies or an intolerance, constipation, fatigue and even stress can cause tummy aches.

When it’s your run of the mill tummy ache however, there are some natural remedies that can help ease your kid’s discomfort.

1. Chamomile tea

 

My go-to remedy when my kids have tummy aches is a cup of decaffeinated chamomile tea, which is a well-known remedy for upset stomach.

Chamomile leaves are high in flavonoids, a type of plant pigment that is thought to be responsible for chamomile’s healing properties. Research suggests chamomile may reduce inflammation and help the muscles relax.

Infants and young children however, should never consume chamomile tea, because (like honey), it may be contaminated with botulism spores.

2. Ginger

 

Ginger is another ancient remedy for tummy aches, nausea, and for pregnant women, morning sickness.

Studies suggest ginger’s effectiveness is due to its antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and anti-nausea properties. The oily resin from the roots of ginger contain bioactive compounds that are believed to help ease gastrointestinal (GI) distress.

If you decide to try ginger, ginger ale won’t cut it because it’s not made with real ginger root and is mostly sugar and high fructose corn syrup anyway.

Instead, try ginger tea, ginger beer (it’s non-alcoholic), or freshly grated ginger in a cup of warm water.

3. Heating pad

 

A heating pad (set on low) for about 20 minutes often does the trick when my kids have tummy aches. It helps relax the muscles in the abdomen and it can be soothing while your child is resting.

4. Peppermint

 

Peppermint, an herb which is a cross between water mint and spearmint, has been well researched and shown to be an effective remedy for people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), according to a July 2014 study in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology.

Less is known about peppermint’s effectiveness for indigestion or nausea but it’s still worth a try.

Peppermint tea seems to be safe for kids, but be sure to read warning labels.

Peppermint essential oil in a diffuser may be OK, but the oils should never be applied to an infant or child’s face or chest because serious side effects can occur if they inhale it, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

5. Produce and fiber-rich foods

 

If your child has a tummy ache because he’s constipated, a green vegetable smoothie, a few prunes or a small amount of prune juice may do the trick.

If constipation is a persistent problem, it’s important to talk to your pediatrician to rule out a medical condition.

Of course, taking a closer look at his diet is important too.

Avoid fast foods, processed foods and greasy foods and prioritize fruits and vegetables and other fiber-rich foods that can ease and prevent constipation.

6. Drink up

 

Sometimes drinking water is enough to get things moving and ease a tummy ache.

If you have a tough time getting your child to drink plain water, add slices of cucumber or strawberries, which will add a hint of flavor.

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.

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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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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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[/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.

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[/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.

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[/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.

[/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.

[/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.

5 Healthy Holiday Gifts for Kids

5 Healthy Holiday Gifts for Kids

Whether it’s a gift they asked for or something you knew they’d love, there’s nothing better than the joy of watching kids open their presents.

Along with the toys, electronics and clothes, why not add also buy a present that will make them healthy and happy too?

Here are 5 healthy holiday gifts for kids I’m loving right now, and I’m sure you will too.

1. Kids’ Cooking Classes

I was so excited to interview Katie Kimball, the founder of KitchenStewardship.com earlier this year. Her story is in the current issue of FIRST for Women magazine—go grab a copy!

Katie and I have similar philosophies about feeding kids real, healthy, whole foods and agree that if we want our kids to eat healthy, we need to teach them how to cook.

But what if you don’t know how to cook?

That’s where her Kids Cook Real Food video course for families comes in. The easy-to-follow course teaches kids over 30 basic kitchen skills, builds their self-esteem and confidence and gives you easy recipes you can make at home. $49.95-$495. KidsCookRealFood.com.

2. Kids’ Activities Membership

 

If you’re always looking for activities to do with your kids, KidPass is your ticket. Once you sign up, search for activities by age, location and category, then book your tickets and go.

With partnerships at several kids’ gyms, playspaces, museums, bowling alleys, dance studios and more in 7 different cities, there’s plenty for your kids to do every month. $49-$189. KidPass.com

3. Kids’ Chef Tools

When my kids were toddlers, they’d pretend to cut vegetables with a kid-sized, dull knife.

They’re still young but now I let them use a real pairing knife because I want them to learn.

Still, every time we cook together I nearly have a heart attack yelling, “watch your fingers!”

With Curious Chef’s 30-Piece Caddy Collection, you can cook with your kids without worrying. The collection has all the basic kitchen tools that cut but are also safe for kids to use. Designed for kids 4+, the caddy includes their very own whisk, knives, measuring cups and spoons and more. They’re also BPA-free and dishwasher safe. $79.99 Curiouschef.com

4. Gardening Set and Wagon

 

Planting a garden in the spring is one of the best ways to teach kids where healthy food comes from, get them involved with meal planning, and encourage them to eat healthy. It also gets them away from the screens and encourages them to move.

With this 15-piece garden wagon and tool set by Dimple, your kids will love to tag along with you in the garden and get excited about all the fruits and veggies you’ll grow. $19.99. Amazon.com.

5. Yoga Dice

Help your kids find their inner OM and make Yoga a family affair with Uncommon Goods’ Yoga Dice.

Whether you’re an active Yogi or more of a dabbler, you and your kids will have fun discovering the poses and centering yourselves together. $16.95. UncommonGoods.com.

 

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.

10 Ways To Deal With Picky Eaters When You’re Fed Up

10 Ways To Deal With Picky Eaters When You’re Fed Up

Having a kid who is a picky eater is one of the most frustrating parts about being a parent—right up there with potty training, sleepless nights and meltdowns.

Chances are, you’re already doing your best to offer plenty of healthy foods.

But try as you might, you can’t seem to put an end to the picky eating.

When you’re at your wit’s end and you’re ready to pull out your hair, it’s definitely easier to open up a box of mac and cheese and call it a day.

Yet raising healthy kids who will try, accept and even crave healthy foods isn’t something that happens overnight.

With some simple strategies however, it can be done. Let’s get started.

1. Recognize picky eating for what it is 

Many parents label their kids as picky eaters, but just because the behaviors are frustrating, that doesn’t mean it will be that way forever or that they have to define your child.

Picky eating is only a small, short-term obstacle to healthy eating.

Look at the bigger picture and realize that kids who eat healthy now are more likely to be healthy eaters throughout their lives, so it’s well-worth the effort.

 

2. Bring kids in the kitchen

When my kids are having meltdowns and it seems that no matter what I do, doesn’t work to get them to calm down, its extremely frustrating.

But when I’m empathic, hear them out and offer a hug, things usually get better.

Sometimes kids just need their cups refilled with quality time so rather than battling it out at the dinner table, try coming together in the kitchen.

Cooking with your kids is one of the best ways to teach them about healthy eating and it might be the way to end picky eating for good.

Empower your kids with choices: let them find a new recipe, then shop and cook the meal together.

At the very least, cooking can diffuse some of the frustration at the dinner table, create a positive environment around food, and slowly encourage your kids to be more adventurous eaters.

 

3. Have a play date

Children are more likely to do what other children do, and that includes eating.

According to a May 2016 study in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, preschoolers who saw a video of their peers eating a bell pepper ate more peppers themselves a week later and said they were more likely to eat the vegetable again.

If one of your child’s friends is a healthy eater, arrange for them to have a play date. Your kid might be interested in what his friend is eating and more likely to take a bite too.

This strategy can also work well with other family members, especially grandparents, who are skilled at getting kids to try just about anything they offer.

 

4. Serve bites, not portions

Studies show it can take serving small portions of the same food 15 to 20 times, before kids will even take a bite.

Instead of overwhelming your child with an entire plate, or even a portion of vegetables, try serving a tiny amount, such as a broccoli floret, a bean, or a piece of a shredded carrot.

 

5. Let kids play with their food

Kids who play with their food are more likely to try new flavors and a wider variety of foods, a July 2015 study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics suggests.

Rather than pressuring your child to take a bite or bribe them with dessert if he eats his vegetables, encourage him to touch, smell, and even play with his food.

Talk about the shapes, colors, texture and aroma of the foods on his plate. If he takes a bite, that’s great, but the goal is to let him explore his food without feeling pressure to eat it.

6. Change the scenery

 Sometimes moving your meals to a different environment can make mealtimes more interesting and less stressful.

Try packing a picnic lunch and head to the park, eat on the patio instead of the dinner table or take lunch to a friend’s house.

7. Let kids choose what they want to eat

 When kids feel they have a say in what’s being served, they’ll be more likely to try it.

At dinner, serve a salad and a cooked vegetable or put out a buffet of leftovers and let your kids decide what they want on their plates.

Or take a trip to the farmers’ market and let you child choose a new vegetable to try.

8. Take stock of your kid’s diet

If kids are loading up on snacks throughout the day, they probably won’t be hungry for meals.

Snacks like crackers, chips and cookies—even those that are gluten-free, organic and have healthy ingredients like fruit and nuts—can crowd out the calories they should get from healthy foods.

Also, feeding kids processed snacks that are high in sugar and sodium train their taste buds to prefer those foods over healthy, whole foods, so it’s best to limit them as much as possible.

9. Talk to an expert

When you feel like you’ve done all you can to get your kid out of his picky eating habits, consider getting help from an expert.

A pediatric registered dietician nutritionist (RDN) will work with you to understand your child and your family and address all the factors at play. They can also help you set realistic goals and offer strategies and meal ideas to help your child try and eventually accept new foods.

To find an RDN, ask your pediatrician to make a referral or search the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ site, EatRight.org.

10. Stick with it

 It might seem that your kids will be picky eaters forever, especially if you have toddlers who are inherently picky, but most kids can become healthy, adventurous eaters.

The key is to continue to offer healthy foods and teach healthy eating habits every day. This simple shift in mindset can help you muster up the energy and dedication to stay the course and raise healthy-eating kids.

7 Healthy Holiday Baking Tips

7 Healthy Holiday Baking Tips

I love baking anytime of year, but during the holidays, it’s even more special.

As a child, I have fond memories of making chocolate-coconut Christmas cookies and these Betty Crocker candy cane cookies with my own mom.

Now that I have my own kids, I love holiday baking even more.

This year, my daughters and I will make Skinnytaste’s pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving and my grandmother’s famous cheesecake for Christmas (it’s a secret recipe). We’ll also make coconut macaroons and a few varieties of cookies for their teachers, bus drivers and volunteers at our church.

During the holiday season, it’s inevitable that your kids (and you!) will eat sugar.

The great thing about baking however, is that you can often make simple swaps and substitutions in your recipes that cut down on the calories, fat and sugar, add some nutrition and don’t change the taste much at all.

Here, read on for 7 healthy holiday baking tips to make your recipes even sweeter.

1. Upgrade your flour

White, refined flour lack nutrition and fiber and spikes your blood sugar, so I tend to avoid using it.

Since my kids eat a mainly gluten-free diet anyway, I usually swap all-purpose flour for gluten-free oats that I grind up in the food processor.

True, sometimes only all-purpose flour will do, but when it’s not going to change the taste or the texture, try oat flour, coconut flour or almond flour, all of which have more fiber.

Almond flour, in particular, is a good source of protein—7 grams in about a cup—, as well as vitamin E and healthy, monounsaturated fats.

In some recipes, you can swap in the same amount of flour, but others may require a different ratio of liquids. Try to find recipes that call for the specific type of flour you want to use or find out how to adjust your ingredients.

2. Cut down on sugar

 

Sweeteners like coconut sugar may have a lower glycemic index than table sugar, and less of an impact on blood sugar, but it’s not as low as say, broccoli.

What’s more, just because these sugars and others like honey are naturally derived, they’re still considered added sugars and should be limited in our diets.

Of course, the holidays are a special occasion so I don’t see a big deal in indulging in sweets. But if you’re planning back-to-back holiday events or you’re looking to cut back, you can cut the amount of sugar in a recipe by a 1/4 or a 1/3, which probably won’t make that much of a difference in the taste.

While pies, cakes and cookies usually need sugar to taste sweet, adding dried fruit like dates, raisins or cranberries to bread or muffin recipes can be a healthy, delicious substitute for sugar.

3. Make mini versions of your holiday favorites

 

One of the best ways to keep portions healthy for everyone is to create miniature cookies and desserts. Try mini muffin tins, mini loaf pans or ramekins for smaller, healthier holiday treats.

4. Mix in vegetables

Pureed or grated, vegetables like zucchini, carrots, beets, squash and pumpkin all add fiber, vitamins and minerals and antioxidants to a holiday dessert otherwise devoid of nutrition.

Vegetables also add flavor and moistness to breads, muffins and cakes.

5. Substitute avocado for butter or oil

While you’re adding vegetables, try fruit too—with an avocado.

Avocado is one of the healthiest foods you can feed your kids, especially because it’s high in fiber, has 20 vitamins and minerals and healthy, monounsaturated fats.

Avocado is also an easy, 1 to 1 substitute for butter or oil. I’ve found that it often makes cookies or muffins have a greenish hue, which isn’t a big deal if you’re enjoying them at home, but it might be if you’re giving them as gifts or bringing them to a party.

6. Add chia seeds

High in fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, iron and calcium, chia seeds are a super food.

When you’re baking, chia seeds can easily be incorporated into cookies, muffins, breads, pancakes and cakes. They don’t change the taste or the texture but you may have to add additional liquid ingredients because they can thicken up the batter.

7. Swap cream for Greek yogurt

When a recipe calls for cream cheese, sour cream or buttermilk, try using full fat or low fat Greek yogurt which is an excellent source of protein, vitamin B12 and potassium and helps to cut down on some of the calories and saturated fat.