Healthy Eating solution

Trying to eat and snack healthy is something we always try to do in our family. That plans does get derailed at times, but I wanted to share with you a simple trick I do, to make healthy eating easier.

First, I try to make a weekly menu and when I do that I try to take into account weekly events. Example, once a week I leave home soon after my hubby gets home from work to work with our church's youth program. That day leaves little time for a complicated dinner and I so I try to plan fast meals that are easy cleanup. That way my husband doesn't feel stressed when he is doing dinner and taking over mommy duties. Another day I plan for is weekends, especially if my husband has an extra day off or we are going somewhere, on those days I plan a dinner out, or lunch out. If we end up not going out, we can do leftovers or something can come out of the freezer. Doing this not only helps with going out for a quick and often unhealthy meal, but it also helps when I am shopping. Since shopping with a toddler can be a bit of an experience, I try to shop once a week, and when I do, it's business time.

Second, I prepare snacks ahead of time. This means that fruits are washed and prepped as possible, and sometimes portioned into small snack bags or containers. I do this most often with grapes. Taking the 8 minutes to clean and prepare grapes to hand to a little one keeps him from making my pantry a drive thru. I also portion out crackers, plain popcorn with light salt, trail mix, and even dry cereal for fast grab and go snacks. Preparing small containers of peanut butter or purchasing small go size packs also seems to work great in our family. Today, a container of grapes and a cut up low fat string cheese were Toddler Tornado's snack, and perhaps partially the terrier's, because I am pretty sure that the cheese was shared with the dog. By putting snacks in a basket, my little guy, and my big guy hubby, feel that they have a choice in what they snack on as well.

Third, and this one is mostly for the shorty in our family, is to try to curb snacking (in order to not fill up before a meal). I do this by keeping any food stashed away. Out of sight, out of mind. This is especially true for any kind of sweet. I admit that if there is some kind of sweet treat on the counter I am also tempted. I keep the pantry door closed, this was learned early on when he would get up in the morning and help himself to an entire bag of daddy's ranch Doritos. For taller tots, door sliding locks might help.

Fourth, don't buy it. Don't shop hungry, and strive to pick the healthier foods. It is hard at first, but the more I choose healthy options, the more I desire them.

What are your healthy eating hints?


    Sharon Ng
    Monthly Newsletter Contributor since 2012
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