healthy kids

healthy kids

Healthy Kid’s Snack Ideas

Posted on June 6, 2018 in Uncategorized

Parents are often looking for healthy kids snacks to help their children stay fit. It can be a challenge, though, with all of the unhealthy, over-sweetened and fattening snacks out there to tempt your kids. Worst of all, advertising actively targets children, encouraging them to have a sweet tooth and crave junk food. While it can seem like an uphill battle, there are things you can do to instill healthy snacking habits in your children.

Snacks, for children and adults alike, can be a time when people make some of their least healthy eating choices. With kids, this can be a time when you can’t always be watching or supervising what they eat. You can, however, send them off to school with some healthy snacks, which can help them develop good habits.

Until recently, it has been widely assumed that watching your weight was something you didn’t have to worry about until you were an adult, maybe even middle-aged. Sadly, however, we are seeing a rapid increase in childhood obesity. The causes for this are mainly twofold, and not very hard to identify: an increase in calories and junk food and a corresponding decrease in physical activity! You can help to influence your children in positive ways in both of these areas.

Be sure that your kids get a good breakfast every morning. This should include a high quality protein and maybe some fruit. Being too hungry in between meals is one reason kids gravitate towards unhealthy snacks. If you give them cereal for breakfast, try to give them a healthy one that is not over-sweetened. Sugary cereals can start off a day long habit of sugar spikes and letdowns. Sugar acts as a drug in the body, and has an addictive quality. So if kids (or adults) start the day off eating very sweet foods, as soon as the initial sugar jolt starts to wear off they will start craving more.

Healthy trail mixes can make excellent snacks. Again, look for ones without added sugar. Today many trail mixes contain pieces of candy, which are hardly healthy. Nuts and dried fruit are good sources of, respectively, protein and natural sugar. Another idea is to put the trail mix into some plain yogurt. You can add a little natural sweetener like raw honey, pure maple syrup or agave nectar.

Instead of potato chips or pretzels, try giving your kids healthier substitutes like vegetable chips, which can be found in natural foods section of your supermarket.

You can also find things like organic, whole grain crackers. These can be dipped in foods like hummus, baba ganoush (both tasty Middle Eastern spreads), guacamole or an all natural salsa.

If you buy packaged snacks, look for healthier alternatives to candy bars. Even many energy bars are highly sweetened. They do, however, make energy bars or fruit strips that are only sweetened with organic or natural ingredients instead of sugar or corn syrup.

These are just a few ideas for healthy kids snacks. If you make it a point to pay attention to what your children eat in between meals you can help them develop healthier eating habits.

Good Healthy Food = Good Healthy Kids

Posted on May 31, 2018 in Uncategorized

I had an epiphany the other day as I loaded the car from yet another grocery store trip. Produce is heavy! (That wasn’t the extent of it-stick with me here). Produce has some good, solid mass. When you pick a grapefruit you want one that is heavier than it looks. In this particular shopping excursion I had purchased 30 grapefruit, and they were all heavier than they looked. It took some muscle to just load up the grapefruit! I also had oranges, apples, bananas, pears, carrots, lettuce, broccoli, yams, squash, etc, etc, you get the idea. It had been awhile since I’d done a good shopping so I also had some healthy cold cereal that my kids will actually eat on those crazy days when we’re in a rush. After heaving the produce into the car that bag of cold cereal almost flew out of my hands as I loaded it up with the same enthusiasm.

“You are what you eat” rang loudly through my head. I thought of my children-they are all heavier than they look. They are solid kids-not fat-solid. Their cousin counterparts weigh much less than my kids and I’m always surprised when I pick the cousins up-they are so light!!

I thought of my kids and looked at the food in the back of my car. 85% of it was produce. Good, healthy, colorful, solid, delicious produce. This produce is the mainstay of what my children eat-and they are healthy kids! In my mind I saw my children being synonymous with the grapefruit I had just purchased. They are heavier than they look, just like the grapefruit I had so carefully picked out. Every time they eat they are taking nutrient dense food into their bodies and building strong healthy bones and muscles. They don’t drink milk or eat a lot of packaged food, and in that moment I committed to doing even better at making sure my children get the produce they need to keep growing strong and healthy.

Fruits and vegetables are a mainstay in our home, and the kids will often ask for their favorites when we go shopping. Just this week my eight year old begged for kiwi while my 6 year old begged for fresh green beans at the grocery store. You read that right-green beans!! My 3 year old was so sad that there wasn’t any corn on the cob in sight, but settled for strawberries this time.

It doesn’t take much to convince me to buy their favorite fruits and vegetables during our weekly shopping-after all, you are what you eat!

[Top]

Healthy Kids – Get Your Kids Outside

Posted on May 25, 2018 in Uncategorized

Healthy kids are something we all want. Let’s face it there’s not much more that breaks our hearts than seeing our own kids suffering because they’re sick or under the weather. Most of us would rather be sick ourselves than to see our own kids suffering due to an illness. Since not having our kids get sick is so important to us, it’s really important that we teach and also set good examples of healthy living for our kids.

How can we honestly think our own kids are going to develop good healthy habits if their parents aren’t setting good examples? Kids learn a great deal by simply observing what their parents do. This is true throughout their lives.

Having said that, here are a few things you can do as a parents or guardians to ensure your kids are getting every chance to pick up and learn good healthy habits. Many of these will also help us as parents get some needed exercise.

o During the summertime or when the weather is nice take a family walk or a bike ride every night. This type of exercise is not only good for your health it also is a good idea to do a family activity; this’ll encourage and support the belief in the family spending quality time together.

o Share outside chores with your kids. These don’t have to be difficult things but some things like helping water your trees or helping pick weeds or racking the grass can help your kids appreciate the outdoors, not to mention earn a sense of achievement by helping out.

o Encourage your kids’ involvement in sports at a young age. Most communities have some sort of organized summer sports. These can include T-ball, baseball, basketball, etc. Pick out a couple for your kids to try out. Don’t get discouraged if your kids don’t seem to take an interest and be careful not “push” your kids into sports, they must take in interest for it to be sustainable.

o Get involved in some healthy lifestyle activities yourself. By taking up running or by joining an adult sports league of some sort, your kids will more likely take an interest in getting involved in sports activities.

[Top]