September is a busy month. Children are back in school with homework, sports and extracurricular activities. Tired parents, grandparents and caregivers often want to grab something quick to eat. Whether home or on the run, what is the healthiest approach to eating when stressed?
Feeling the Stress? What to Avoid!
Everyone can feel some type of stress now and then. For some people, reaching for comfort food may help to provide relief – but is it really beneficial to your health?
Studies have shown that foods high in sugar (donuts, ice cream, pastries) may provide an immediate high, but are often leave you tired and hungry. This also applies to highly processed foods (processed foods or fried foods). Foods high in salt (chips, fried foods) can leave you feeling dehydrated and bloated.
What to eat instead? Try these options:
– Craving something salty? Try avocado toast
– Need a sweet fix? Opt for dark chocolate or dark chocolate covered almonds
– Try to pack a snack or meal vs. running to a drive-through
Not only does a healthy diet benefit your overall health, but your teeth will thank you for it as well! Make a new habit to reach for nutritious snacks and meals – you will feel better and less stressed.
Have you done your spring cleaning? Is your house fresh and clean? Did you add to the list your pantry and refrigerator? A healthy diet will help support a healthy mouth. If you can take the time to make your own food and snacks, you will gain nutrients and skip on the added sugars and fats. Most processed, packaged foods are packed with unwanted additives and sugars.
Healthy Snacks bring Smiles
Here are a few of our favorite swaps:
Trade deep fried chips for heirloom popcorn.
Ditch bottled salad dressing and make your own.
Switch out ketchup or ranch dipping sauce, try hummus
Avoid the drive-through fast food habit, plan a crock-pot meals.
Trade boxed macaroni and cheese for homemade whole grain pasta and low fat cheese.
Instead of sugary popsicles, try homemade popsicles made with yogurt or real fruit juice.
Stop the syrupy soda pop, bring on water with a slice of lemon.
New year, new you, new resolutions — everyone always says they want to eat healthier and kids shouldn’t be an exception. When kids eat healthier, they feel better and have more energy to be a kid. Healthy eating habits are also beneficial for successful oral health. Healthy foods contain the essential vitamins and nutrients kids need to grow. Parents and caregivers need to create an atmosphere where healthy foods are the first choice and junk foods are consumed in moderation.
Here are 5 ways to help your kids eat healthier foods and less junk food:
1. Stock your pantry with healthy snack choices and avoid buying snacks that are void of nutrients and full of sugar such as fruit snacks. Encourage children to choose fruits if they have a sweet tooth — try a smoothie!
2. Bake more often — there are so many recipes out there that contain fruits and vegetables that are kid-approved. Instead of breakfast pastries, try homemade muffins with oatmeal and fruit!
3. Limit TV – there are a lot of commercials that promote fast food meals and candy. Spend time together playing games or outside.
4. Create a family meal plan together — have your children help you plan your meals. Download this example
5. Eat together — eating meals together helps families stay united. Celebrate with healthy snacks like fruit yogurt vs. chocolate sundaes.
Eat together — eating meals together helps families stay united. Celebrate with healthy snacks like fruit yogurt vs. chocolate sundaes.