Some of our kids come with real nutritional deficiencies. We want what’s best for them; part of that is getting good nutrition into their bodies so they can focus in school and play with energy. That can be especially challenging now, during the holiday season, when treats abound! Here are a few ideas of how to get the good stuff into those bellies:
- Smoothies: Fruit (most kids like the sweetness), milk (dairy or non-dairy), a smidge of maple syrup and a generous handful of raw spinach (mineral rich, sweet in flavor, and easily disguised), and a little good fat, like an avocado, to help cream it up a bit. Blend with ice, call it a shake and watch your kids drink up. Experiment! Let them build their own…make it part of family fun. If it’s a little green from the spinach, call it a monster smoothie.
- Keep a veggie tray: Keep a veggie tray going, and refill when it gets low. After school, on a weekend afternoon, or when you’re making dinner, set it out. Soon you’ll notice the whole family munching from it each time they walk by.
- Breakfast: Come up with some easy wholesome breakfast ideas. Try slow cooker oatmeal that can be started the night before. In the morning, pull out raisins, nuts, and maple syrup and let the kids go to the “oatmeal bar” once they’re dressed.
These are building blocks for a healthy nourished brain and nervous system. It’s not about taking away all the things they like or are already used to; if you decide to do that you can do it slowly. It’s about adding in things that they enjoy and are good for them, so that you can build healthy habits together.
Remember also: don’t underestimate your kids. You’ll be surprised when you put out fruits and veggies…they’ll eat them. Listen to what they like, and make sure it’s available. What becomes normal for the whole family will become normal for your kids. You can do it!