Showing posts with label nutrition. Show all posts
Showing posts with label nutrition. Show all posts
Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Back To School The Healthy Way

As the beginning of school fast approaches, we are faced with another year of lunch box choices. Children form their eating habits ealry and it is wise to get them into the habit of packing and eating a healthy lunch.

Most heart disease, obesity, osteoporosis and other life long diseases begin to develop in childhood. Usually, it is a handful of foods that do the most damage and so a handful of changes can go a long way towards a healthy diet.

Let your children help pack their lunch box and offer them healthy choices. Tell them the benefits of their choices. Children truly do like to be educated and it is amazing at how much healthy information they will retain and perhaps even share with others. By offering them choices, they will feel as if they have had a say in their lunch and you will be confident that they will make a wise healthy choice. By adjusting your child's lunch box menu, you can add energy to their day, years to their life, and a healthy attitude about eating in the future.

Remember the following tips and do not forget " A handful of changes goes a long way".
1. Milk should be 1% or fat free. Whole milk is the largest source of saturated fat in a child's diet. Milk keeps hearts healthy and arteries clear.
2. When using cheese, opt for low fat or fat free. Cheese is the 2nd largest source of artery clogging fat.
3. Switch from regular lunch meat to low fat or fat free. Often they taste quite the same!
4. Always offer a fruit choice. Apples, oranges, grapes, bananas, fruit cups or applesauce. Try serving them in a variety of ways to keep it exciting. Also offer yogurt or peanut butter as a dipping sauce.
5. Always offer a vegetable choice. Vegetables reduce your child's chance of heart disease, cancer, stroke and blindness later in life. Offer small carrot sticks, celery, cucumbers. broccoli or small salads. Offer ranch dressing for vegetable dip.
6. Use whole grain bread instead of white bread. The label must indicate that it is "whole wheat".
7. Limit sugary snacks such as sweets, cakes, candy and doughnuts. Most teachers will appreciate this as well.
8. Replace regular potato chips with baked chips, pretzels, nuts, breadsticks or low fat crackers. Also beware of Olean (olestra) products, these can cause cramping and diarrhea. They can also rob your child's body of important cancer fighting carotenoids and phytochemicals. One ounce of Bugles contains as much fat as a McDonalds Quarter Pounder.
9. Use 100% fruit juice, water or flavored water for drinks. Most other juices have only 10% fruit juice and as much sugar as soda.
10. If you use Lunchables, buy the low fat Lunchables. Regular Lunchables get 2/3 of their calories from fat and sugar.

Have a safe and healthy back to school!!!

Originally posted on CharlotteMommies.com
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