Summer’s the Time to Get Your Family Eating Right
Eating right is a cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle as well as a healthy mind. In the long run, your kids will find much more satisfaction in life if they learn how to eat right as early as possible. Minnie’s Food Pantry presents you with a few ways to get your family and your partner on board.
Learn About Nutrition
Although schools teach the basic elements of nutrition, it may not be enough, as many children cannot differentiate between healthy and unhealthy foods, which is crucial to health and mental wellness, Hello Motherhood reports. As a parent, it’s up to you to get informed and fill in the gaps in their education so the entire family can make the right choices. There’s no need to complicate things. Stick with the basics, such as eating five servings of fruits and vegetables each day.
The good news is that insurance will often cover nutrition counseling. Connect with your insurer to see if you can talk with a dietitian or a nutritionist.
Choose the Right Ingredients
Don’t be distracted by fad diets and constantly changing trends driven by the media. Keep it simple and seek out whole, natural, and unprocessed foods as the basis of your family’s diet, as mentioned in SheKnows. That includes whole grain products with at least two grams of fiber per serving. As for what to avoid, that would include hydrogenated fats, sodium, and artificial ingredients.
Fortunately, as the grocery bills remain high these days, you can still secure low-cost or even free foods. Use coupons any chance you get, and look into local food pantries that can help, too.
Visit the Farmers Market
Your local farmers market is a great place where you don’t have to think about whether what you’re buying is healthy, and there are great apps to help you find these markets near you. Everything at the farmers market is fresh and natural, and the kids will have fun just checking out all the different fruits and vegetables in all manner of colors and shapes. In fact, it makes for a wonderful family outing and provides a valuable lesson on how the food gets from the farm to our dinner plates.
Plant a Garden
You don’t have to be a farmer to have fresh fruits and veggies available at your fingertips, and all it takes is a bit of yard and a little sweat. Furthermore, one study cited in Today’s Parent shows that kids who garden grow up to make healthy food choices on a regular basis, and that means your efforts pay off in the long run by instilling good habits. Read up on gardening how-to’s and expert advice so you can successfully start a garden that will thrive in the weeks and months ahead.
Teach the Kids to Cook
With no homework to do, the kids have got plenty of time to help around the house. You may be scared they’ll cut themselves with a knife or burn themselves with boiling water, and that’s all quite possible. However, what’s certain is they’ll never learn a basic life skill if you don’t guide them. Besides, the little ones are more likely to eat those fresh veggies and lean meats you picked up at the market if they prepare the goodies themselves.
Keep Healthy Snacks at Hand
Potato chips are boring. As Make and Takes notes, there are much healthier options available that’ll tickle your taste buds while keeping the salt, sugar, and fat to a minimum. Choose from their recipes for things like cinnamon apple chips, banana chocolate chip energy bites, or frozen yogurt fruit dots to keep your family’s tastebuds happy. While it may take a little more effort in preparation, your family will thank you when they dive into those delicious snacks. They’re great for an after-school snack or on the go.
Keeping great snacks like these on hand is a great step in keeping the entire family on a healthier path. But you can also encourage the family to walk to nearby appointments, and take the stairs instead of the elevator when shopping. Last but not least, be sure to drink more water throughout the day; for example, you could skip that late afternoon tea, diet soda, or coffee with a bottle of cold water from the fridge.
One thing should be clear by now: Healthy eating is fun, it’s crucial to your health, and it gets the whole family on the healthy living train. Plant a garden or a few container plants, shop smarter, and add some inexpensive, healthy snacks to your pantry. With your new habits, the entire family will feel better every day!
Minnie’s Food Pantry provides numerous programs that help families gain long-term food security and to break the generational curse of people (especially children) in low-income areas not having access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Contact us today to learn more! 972-596-0253
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