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TOPIC: Helping Your Kids Transition to Whole Foods

Helping Your Kids Transition to Whole Foods 28 Feb 2013 15:51 #51

Helping Your Kids Transition to Macrobiotic or Whole Foods
By Jen Hoy

As a mother of two, I fully understand the challenge of helping your kids stay on track with their food when they are surrounded by unhealthy options as soon as they walk out your door. From the moment kids start school, it can feel like a losing battle. No matter how well you are feeding them at home, the allure of cookies, chips, fast food and pizza can be overwhelming. So can the pressure to fit in with their peers, and a child who eats differently can be the target of unwanted attention. So what to do?

Talk to Your Kids About Food
If you are new to whole foods, macrobiotics or healthy eating in general, it’s important to tell your kids you’re trying something new, and why. Older children and teens may be more resistant to the change, and you might need to appeal to their vanity. Telling a teen that “This will help your skin clear up” or “This will help your performance in sports” is sometimes more effective than touting the health benefits of a new diet.

Pick Your Battles
At some point you have to recognize that you can’t monitor everything your child eats, so make sure that the choices available at home are good ones. If a child is raised on good, wholesome food, his/her body retains the memory of what that food feels like. Straying from the norm is almost inevitable as our kids grow up and begin to assert their separateness, but the good news is that they eventually return to wanting to eat well, because it feels better.

Offer Good Alternatives
Assume that treats are readily available in school, and limit sweets to fresh and dry fruit, healthy desserts like Spiced Apple Kanten or Jam Dots, and the occasional splurge. Buy organic chips with no artificial flavorings or ingredients. Have carrots, celery, almond butter and hummus available for a before-dinner snack. Your kids may gripe, but if they’re hungry they’ll eat what is made available to them.


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