RANT: Your Kids Will Eat What You Do

If you’ve ever had a 12 month old, you know they want what you have.  They want your phone, your keys, your coffee.  The same is true at meal time.  If you’re eating chips, they’ll want chips.  If you’re eating salad, they are 100% more likely to explore the texture of your salad, than if they’ve never seen you eating greens.

I’m not saying broccoli will be their favorite food –especially if they’ve already had ice cream. But, I am saying if you’re eating healthy foods, they’re more likely to grow up eating healthy foods.

Veggies

When feeding your kids, the two most important things to remember are:

  1. KEEP TRYING. Kids may spit out tomatoes the first 9 times they try them.  But if you don’t keep trying, they’ll never get the nutrition their little brains and bodies need.  It takes 10-20 exposures to adjust taste. (This is true for adults too!)  Often it’s the texture, not the taste, they are repelled by.  Seeing healthy foods over and over, makes them more familiar. And familiar = comfort. Just keep trying!
  2. PACKAGED FOOD is devoid of nutrition and packed with harmful chemicals!  Packaged foods are made (in a factory) in mass to make money — not insure our kids’ health.  Food additives are linked to hyperactivity, tooth decay, childhood diabetes, obesity, learning disabilities, problems concentrating and depression. So do yourself and your kids a favor, make eating REAL foods a part of your family’s daily life.

 

Remember, your kids eat what you do. So eat how you should. Lots of plants, limit packages!

RECIPE: Loco for Coco Smoothie

Don’t let the greens fool you!

This sweet treat has no added sugar or sweeteners, but could be your favorite new dessert!

Try this guilt-free, gluten-free, vegan, all natural, sustaining blood sugar smoothie–you will NOT be disappointed.  loco coco smoothie

In a blender combine:
2 handfuls Spinach (or kale)
1 handful (~1 cup) ice
1/3 cup Coconut unsweetened
3 dates
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2-1 cup almond milk
Blend and Believe. (how delectable this simple, nutritious smoothie tastes)

RANT: Big Bags o’ Candy

Remember when ‘needles in candy’ were the big Halloween scare?

Now I find it frightening to see the pounds of Halloween candy that line the aisles of our already sugar laden grocery stores.

Did you ever have the neighbor gave out apples each year? I hated that.

I now want to high-five that neighbor.

We also had a dentist in our neighborhood that gave out toothbrushes, as a kid, I found that hugely disappointing….

Disappointment quickly forgotten once we found the neighbor next door wasn’t home and had left a large bowl of unchaperoned candy for the taking.

Years later, while in medical school, on Halloween night, I had run out of candy.  I turned of the porch light, which I believe is the universal sign for ” No more candy-I’m not home- I’m done for the night”.

Some pesky high schoolers continued to knock on my door, unrelentingly. I finally acquiesced, explaining through a cracked door, I was all out of the good stuff but  I managed to dig up some microwave popcorn and Big Red Chewing gum.  An exceedingly  altruistic offering, I might add, only to find the wrappers of the above offerings all over my lawn the next morning.  Ingrates!

That was the end of my candy giving career. Now there are only tricks at this house!

So, how many pieces of candy is it reasonable to give out? for your kids to eat? And at want point is it OK to trash the Halloween bounty? How many treats do we allow? Do we trick our kids into being healthy? How many tricks must we play to treat our kids healthfully?

RANT: Yankle-Doodle Dandy! Happy 4th of July

We usually celebrate the 4th of July with my fantastically fun family at the beach.  Everyone decorates their bikes or makes golf cart floats and there’s a parade down to an area with jumps, inflatable slides and rides for the kids. (Which in theory is quite fun, but can also be a bit of a crowed, hot sweat-fest).  It is great to see everyone and catch up on what folks are up to…

But it is usually 109 degrees (mild exaggeration) and humid as ‘all get out’, so thankfully there is free water (and cold beers and cocktails, if you need a little ‘hair of the dog’)

There are also heaps of Sno-cones, hot dogs and corn dogs.

I’m not sure what the Sno-Cone blue dye is that stains your tongue (and shirt) bright blue, but I’m pretty sure it’s not great for you.  And we’ve all heard what part of the pig is used for hot dogs.  But yet we willingly scarf ’em down.  I don’t guess there will be a holiday where kale and berries are the main course.  So until then, enjoy the Fire Works….and pig parts.  And, if you can sneak some greens in between cold beers, well, that’d be Yankee-Doodle-Dandy.IMG_2284

RECIPE: Brussel Sprout Hash

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Brussel Sprouts.  Those notorious green ‘spheres of gross’ that your parents would bribe you to eat…

Turns out,  they’re actually pretty tasty when done up right!

This is my husband’s easy-peasy, extra-tasty dish and it goes a lil’ sumthin’ like this:

15-20 brussel sprouts, halved

1/2 white onion, chopped

1/2 head of red cabbage, chopped

1 garlic clove, chopped

2 Tbsp of olive oil

dash of salt and pepper

fresh grated Parmesan, optional

Serves 8-10 depending on how many brussel sprouts you bribe your kids to eat (kidding, never bribe when it’s your kids’ health! Only punish. Kidding again. Do what you like, this isn’t a parenting blog…but make your kids eat greens from the first year of life on)

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In a large pan, sauté olive oil, onion and garlic on med/high x 5 mins

Then add Brussel Sprouts x 5-7 min cover but flip sprouts/stir occasionally

add cabbage and sauté x 2 minutes

salt and pepper to taste

garnish with parmesan, if so desired (cheese makes everything taste better, but some of us should avoid dairy)

RULE: Sitting is the New Smoking

A recent article in Runner’s World (a world I do not live in BTW) warns “the more you sit, the poorer your health and the earlier you may die…NO MATTER HOW FIT YOU ARE”

The latest studies show sitting, for long periods of time, like more than 6 hours a day, can be just as detrimental to your health as smoking.   Prolonged sitting is horrible for your spine, makes your muscles atrophy and results in obesity.  Hunching over a desk results in terrible posture, tight shoulders, a weak core, neck and low back pain, not to mention your computer screen’s damaging effect on vision.

fat ass in chair

This is bad news for the 100+ million Americans who sit about 9 hours, each day. We sit at the breakfast table, then in a car, train or bus commuting to work, then sit at a desk, counter or computer for 8 hours, then sit on the return commute to get home in time to sit at the dinner table and then follow all that sitting time with a little more sitting in front of the TV.

The same health concerns apply to kids who sit on the way to school and then for 6-8 hours at school and then sit some more while doing homework, dinner and TV time.

They say even adult ‘binge exercisers’, those who bang out an hour at the gym each day, cannot undo the colossal amount of time they spend on their rear ends.

To offset all of this sedentation,  some schools are using stools instead of seats, so kids will have to engage their core muscles while seated.  Some people are choosing to bike to work or take long walks on their lunch breaks.  Some companies are providing standing work stations.  Although, long periods of standing are also tough on the spine and circulation (think varicose veins), so some really slick work places are providing standing work stations with treadmills!  Employees can their walk on while they work (I smell a workers comp injury).  Some people are simply opting for jobs where they can be outdoors.

So, until we all figure out a way to walk, jog, repel, ski, dance, glide, skate, ride, box, roll, skip, jump, climb, sail, float, zip or paddle through our days….we just need to remember to get off our cans and MOVE OUR BODIES.  Not once a day. But as often as possible.  Unless early death sounds alluring.

Hourly office dance parties anyone?

 

 

[I nabbed this photo off the wild world web, I do not know who it is and I did not take this photo, but bc there are no identifying features and because 78 million Americans are obese, it could be anyone]