Small but Mighty Healthy Diet Tips for the Family
The only fool-proof way to a healthy family diet seems to be buying a piece of land, growing our own vegetables and dedicating our lives to eating well. Most of us have other goals, but that doesn’t mean we’re not concerned with healthy family meals, and making sure we provide healthy food for kids. There’s a deluge of information out there on how to eat healthy, so we’ve cut through it all with these five healthy diet tips for the family.
Healthy diet tips for the family
Do away with packaged fruit juice.
You might have banned the aerated drinks, but the fruit juice you buy off the shelf often contains just as much sugar as a fizzy cola. The amount of vitamins and antioxidants are negligible, and the juices are also highly processed and loaded with preservatives.
Instead, get your fruit fix from fresh fruits, and make your own juice when you have time on your hands. You can also buy tender coconut water – it contains no preservatives or added sugar and spares you the trouble of squeezing dozens of oranges.
Cut down on store-bought condiments.
Commercially prepared ketchup is primarily made of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) with a few overcooked tomatoes thrown in for flavour. So cutting it out is a quick fix toward a healthy family diet. Instead, try making ketchup at home or substituting it with a spicy coriander chutney. Store bought mayonnaise and salad dressing is no better either. The good news is mayonnaise is easily whipped up at home.
Ditch the chocolate milk.
Another solid move toward a healthy family diet is cutting out the chocolate powder that make the milk yummy enough for your child to consume. They all have one thing in common: They’re loaded with sugar. It’s not worth the small amounts of calcium contained in that glass (not to mention experts are starting to question the real health benefits of milk).
Stay away from sausages and processed meats.
It might seem like an easy fix for a weeknight: stir fry a piece of salami and throw it on a slice of bread, or fry up a batch of nuggets. But would you feel the same way about these hassle-free meals if we told you they are laden with various unhealthy substances from sodium to artificial colouring, flavour enhancers to nitrites (which are highly carcinogenic)? The extra effort of making something fresh, or convincing your kids to eat less-exciting but healthy family meals, is probably worth it
Avoid the fries, pizza and all their fast food cousins.
If you’re a family that orders in or goes out for a meal on weekends, don’t encourage fast food and pizza as “treat” food. Yes, it’s convenient, comes in a pre-portioned box and your kid will wolf it down without complaint, but that doesn’t mean he or she is incapable of enjoying a healthier sit-down meal. This recent Huffington Post piece reveals how kids’ food habits are closely connected to how meal times are treated, and that 3-year-olds needn’t eat with plastic cutlery.
If you follow these quick and easy healthy diet tips, you’ll be cutting out a lot of the worst foods without completely overhauling your family’s habits (or taste buds), and squeaking in some healthy food for your kids. We’ll leave urban farming for another time…