Kids Nutrition: Simple Changes = Big Rewards

By Merilee Kern

We live in an age where food manufacturers are the most health-conscious in history. Take full advantage of these healthy alternatives. It’s simply not an option to choose those refined sugar-loaded gummy bears when dried fruit and trail mix snacks of every sort are a mere aisle or two away.

Make fresh fruit an exciting dessert. Yes, dessert. Low-fat and low-calorie whipped cream with just a touch of colorful sprinkles atop sliced strawberries or other berries can make children squeal with delight. Rainbow Jell-O jam packed with citrus fruit is always a crowd pleaser.

Don’t expect utter perfection of yourself as you work toward your family’s collective health goal. Do what you can to make healthy changes, as doing “something” is better than doing nothing.

Don’t ask if your family wants a certain veggie or fruit with dinner. Make an executive [chef] decision and just serve it up!

Be willing to concede for the greater good. My son will only eat a healthy tuna fish sandwich with low-fat mayonnaise in a wheat pita if it has about four potato chips placed inside the pocket, too.

Ensuring a child eats nutritiously is not about denial which, especially with the younger set, will surely prove self-defeating. Rather, it’s about strategy, systems, consistency and moderation to establish a balance of what is, and is not, health-promoting. It’s not rocket science… it just takes some forethought and some good old common sense. KidsMakingHealthyChoices.com