There were no goody bags full of candy and Hershey kisses. No bowls of M&Ms or jelly beans. No chips or pizza. There weren't even juice boxes. Instead, there was a room full of smiling and laughing 2- and 3-year old children, with their parents.
Just because well-intentioned parents forced their kids to eat foods they loathed or sent them to bed without supper, doesn't mean we have to perpetuate the madness. Our generation also grew up with lots of obesity, anorexia and other food disorders.
Should I take the French approach and limit snacks to one a day at a closely prescribed time? Or plan for a few small meals to fend off inevitable meltdowns? For my kids and me, I've found it's best to snack -- with a caveat.
After reading the news about some school districts stopping their healthier lunch programs, I realized that we really need a cultural switch in this country to make the food revolution more than a passing trend.
Yesterday there was finally some good news in the fight against childhood obesity. This is the first major government report showing a consistent pattern of decline for low-income children -- the kids for whom obesity takes a particularly gruesome toll.
There are always other barriers to making a change such as limited storage space, lack of time to cut food, budget constraints or teachers who find cookies and chips effective rewards in the classroom. Accept that these are barriers -- and work with the school to creatively find solutions.
My daughter doesn't think her diet is "special." To her, it's normal. She eats a wide variety of fruits and vegetables throughout the day. What message does it send to tell my daughter that to eat "healthy food," she needs to get her snack at the camp nurse every afternoon?
As a dietitian, let me share a few basic principles of health and nutrition I have learned and practiced not only with my patients but with my own family. I have compiled a few tips to help you make smart choices when trying to eat balanced meals while on the run.
Now, I really like juicing my vegetables and I've noticed that the smaller folk in my life get a kick out of it too. So don't overlook juices and smoothies as a great way to get your kids to increase their intake of delicious fruits and vegetables.
With a 29 percent increase of childhood obesity in neighborhoods without a park or playground, this is an effort that should be applauded beyond KaBOOM!, whose vision is a great place to play within walking distance of every child in America.