So I know this is a bit of a tricky topic to discuss since I myself do not have children (yet), but as a society, we have a huge problem with the food that our children are eating and with the type of food that is being targeted to them in advertisements and media. Let's be honest, as mothers, we are completely over extended in our day to day responsibilities. We work full time jobs, some have more than one child, we are responsible for getting children ready in the morning, feeding them, sending them to school, going to work, picking them up and bringing them to whatever extra curriculars or sports they are involved in, we go home, cook dinner, make sure homework is done, put them to bed, get ourselves together, sleep and start it all over in the AM. I'm exhausted just writing about it. So the thought of having to cook a fresh dinner every night can be daunting. Time is not always on our side right? So what happens in most American households? We order takeout or we go out to restaurants where we load up on carb heavy and overly salted meals, and maybe indulge in desert or a soda. We spend excess finances on these meals that are not promoting optimal health in our children or in ourselves. Our children are eating chemicals and processed foods most of the day instead of real whole food that will provide them with the proper nutrients for optimal growth and development.
But still, we are tired and we don't have enough time in the day for any of this. But lets take a step back for a second. Dont we want the best for our children and ourselves? We want to be healthy and well and live long healthy lives. We want our growing children to recieve the proper nutrients for their growth. They are coming into their teen years with acne and skin issues, allergies, lowered immune systems, digestive issues, possibly menstruation issues and painful periods (for our daughter of course), some are overweight and on the road to high blood sugar and high cholesterol amongst a slew of other health issues that should not be plaguing our children.
So what's the solution? I say it often but I feel like I can keep saying it and spreading this message. We need to start really paying attention to what we are putting into our bodies. The best way to nourish our family and the easiest way to not question the quality of our food, is to eat whole real food from nature. That's all, it's that simple. Spending more money on produce and lean proteins as well as legumes, nuts etc and less money on processed food, packaged food, sugary food and sugary beverages, candy and fast food. I know it's hard to find the time to cook and pack all of your meals fresh, I get it. But I challenge you this week to make an attempt at family meal prep time. Involve your kids if you can, and prepare your meals on Sunday so that you are at least prepared for the first half of the week. I like to roast a variety of veggies in my oven and then roast a turkey loin or cornish hens at the same time on Sundays. Sometimes I will cook quinoa or rice on the stove top as well. After all is cooked I cool everything and package my food in containers so that through out the week, I can combine different veggies with whatever protein I made in containers and I bring them for lunch. For dinner, we use the raw veggies for salads and prepare a simple lean protein like fish on the stove top or even finish up whatever protein we prepared on Sunday. Usually I will make a variety of proteins on Sunday such as chicken breast, Turkey meatballs and chicken burgers etc ...to last until at least Wednesday night. This will take the guesswork out of what to pack the kids for lunch and what to eat for dinner when everyone gets home. Adding one fresh ingredients to each dinner -such as cooking the protein fresh the night of or preparing a fresh salad- helps to rejuvenate the meal and make it more satisfying. As families, we need to make the time to prepare food together, eat together, and nourish each other together.
Will this be possible 7 nights a week? Maybe not. Maybe your family will only be able to do this 3x a week. But you know what? 3x a week is better than nothing, and the more of a routine you develop, the easier it becomes to make this possible more days during the week. Let's try to involve the kids, have them help in the kitchen, teach them about food and nutrition and let them be part of preparing their food. As a child, I loved this, and it really helps them to enjoy what they are eating as they feel like they took are part in the preparation. Develop healthy habits instead of rushed eating with your children and I promise that you will all reap the health benefits.
In this week's newsletter, I will be sending a free downloadable recipe book that contains some very easy, healthy recipes that you can prepare for your week. If you want to recieve this ebook, please sign up for my newsletter in the newsletter tab and I will send it right over!!
Let's build Wellness and encourage healthy habits together!
In Health and Wellness