I think it goes without saying that besides your love & attention, providing your child with healthy, nutritious food is the best gift you can give them.
I think I have mentioned this before, that I ate terrible as a kid. Although I was not a sickly kid, I remember my Grandma always saying, “you have another cold???”. Growing up, eating well, just wasn’t a priority for my mom to enforce and I pretty much dictated what I would and wouldn’t eat. I ate ALOT of fast food and spaghetti. I was a terribly picky eater and I think my mom felt beat down on trying to make nice meals after working a long day for a kid that would refuse to eat them.I probably ate the best when my grandparents were in town and picked me up after school. We always stayed for dinner, although I don’t remember ever eating any veggies. Thank goodness for Ovaltine (remember that???). My eating habits as a child really did me a disservice and has taken me too long to want to eat better. I know my mom thought she was being “nice” and accommodating, but I think the best thing you can do when it comes to your child’s eating is making sure they eat good food, it’s their health after all that is affected and how important is that!
As I got older, I vowed that my kids would have healthy eating habits from the beginning (although mine were still pretty bad but I knew they would have to change at some point to be a good example). So, when Reed was born, I wanted to do everything right for him to be as healthy as he could possibly be. I breast-fed for almost a year, gave him vitamins, made all his food from scratch (we wanted him to experience what good food tastes like from the beginning, how tasty can food that’s been sitting in a jar for who knows how long be?)and to this day provide him healthy food choices. And, he is a pretty darn healthy kid and a great eater. Him eating healthy has never been negotiable. From time to time we have gotten some resistance when they get to those stages of push-back but overall, he loves eating good, healthy food! I would like to think starting him off right will serve him well with his eating habits & health as he goes through life.
After I fell in LOVE with Shaklee’s cleaning and weight loss products(and became a distributor), I gave their vitamins (Vitalizer) a try. Can I say A-MAZ-ING, there is no comparison with other vitamins out there-even if you think what you are taking is good (I thought I was taking great vitamins before, too)! I of course wanted to give Reed the very best supplements as well.
He takes these everyday with his breakfast.
Another thing that I am very conscious about is sugar! Did you know that your immune system is more susceptible to illness & disease if you diet is high in sugar? Instead of giving him syrup with his pancakes, I give him apple or pumpkin butter to dip the pancakes in so they aren’t dry. He LOVES it and I love that I am giving him something healthier that tastes yummy. I keep his “juice” consumption very low. What he refers to juice is about 1-2 oz of juice to 8-10 oz of water. From time to time he does get a full-fledged juice via juice box or capri-sun for a party, but he knows it’s just a special occasion and luckily, easily converts back to his regular “juices”.
Every breakfast he gets a fruit with either a healthy cereal, oatmeal, toast or pancakes. I really want to get him more protein in the morning, but with him not being able to eat eggs (or nuts until he is 3 due to other food allergies) it makes it more challenging. I am looking to find a healthy turkey sausage, not one that has ingredients I cannot pronounce or artificial coloring. Do you know if something like this exists??? Next time I go to Whole Foods, I am going to check their selection out.
At lunch & dinner he always has a vegetable. Sometimes with lunch I also give him unsweetened applesauce or mandarin oranges (I only buy the ones in juice and rinse them off) for something sweet.
Snacks I will admit we got into a rut not eating whole foods like I would like. HE LOVES PRETZELS (and they are the Snyder’s Gluten-Free ones)! I want to get him back on track so I let him have pretzels once during the day and then he has to have a fruit, raw veggies or non-dairy yogurt for the other snack.
You are probably thinking at this point that I let him eat nothing “fun”. No worries, he is not deprived! I do make sure I have some dessert whether I make him non-dairy chocolate pudding or some baked good, he always has something fun to eat if he eats a good dinner. I have used the raw sugar in baked goods and am pleased with results so I am also experimenting with using agave nectar instead of sugar in baked goods. It makes me feel better about giving him the “healthiest” treats I can.
It made me so pleased as a mother when his Pediatrician commented how the only time she sees him is on well-visits. I'd like to think it has something to do with our practices of eating healthy, taking the best supplements, and getting enough sleep!
It’s because we just love this kid so stinkin much, we insist that he eat well to have the very best health he can!
And for you to be your healthiest...