Get your kids to eat healthy!

I get asked a lot for tips on getting kids to eat healthy. Let me first start off by saying that, if its not good enough for you to eat, then you shouldn’t be feeding it to your kids. There is no reason to make 2 different options at every meal! Everyone should eat the same things. If your diet is important to you because you want to be healthy, then it should be just as important that you feed your kids that way! Why on earth would I feed my kids hot dogs, while I am sitting over here eating chicken and veggies?!?

1. Don’t have unhealthy options at home. YOU go grocery shopping. YOU put the items in your cart. YOU pay money for these items. The common denominator here is YOU! Children have zero control over the food in your house unless you allow them to. If kids have the choice between chips or fruits and veggies, they will most likely choose chips! It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that out!!
2. If it stresses you out, then don’t take them shopping with you. They will whine and try and get you to buy junk. If you want to brave it, like I have to most of the time, try and turn it into a game. “Lets find which foods are healthy.” “help me put the food in the bag” or “point out which foods are unhealthy” This doesn’t always curb fits, but you never know, they might surprise you.
3. When they make a healthy food choice, praise them!! “wow! I am so proud that you made such a healthy choice and it makes me happy to know that your body is growing big and strong!!”
4. The opposite end of number three. When they make a bad choice, don’t make a huge deal about it! They are going to go to birthday parties and have too much cake. They will go to school and their friends will give them cookies. If you make them feel bad, they are just going to turn into secret eaters. I had this problem with my daughter and a good friend mentioned that as long as I am feeding them healthy at home, when the occasionally go out and eat bad, its not such a big deal.
5. Dipping sauces! If I have to put cheese or sauce on something to get my kids to eat it, then so be it! There is a great recipe on here called tzatziki (tuh-zee-kee) at home. It is made from greek yogurt and it tastes just like ranch dressing. My kids love this! They also love almond butter and peanut butter with apples and celery. I also make honey mustard for chicken. I use a couple tablespoons of mustard, some mayo and honey to taste. The absolutely love this sauce!
6. Last night for dinner I steamed asparagus, snap peas and broccoli. I shredded some cheese and put it on the veggies back into the steamer for a minute or two. Its was gooey and delicious. I served it with baked tilapia. As soon as I set it on the table, my 2 year old grabbed a huge bite of the tilapia and i ran for my camera. i said “Everyone, look at Myla eating her food!” And I took a picture. Soon everyone was saying “take a picture of me eating my broccoli!” or peas or what ever. They all cleaned their plates. I was happy!

Dinner last night:

IMG_0961 7. Notice how I served asperagus, snap peas and broccoli. They aren’t going to like everything. There are still veggies that I won’t eat as an adult, like lima beans. But sometimes it takes just putting it on their plate a few times to get them to try it. Most likely they won’t touch it and I will just put it in my husband’s lunch for the next day. But just because they don’t eat something, don’t give up on it. I swear I have fed my kids sweet potatoes 1000 times. My oldest still gags, but she is older and I can say “You have to eat 5 bites” or whatever.

Don’t give up on your kids’ diet!  A diet is not something that you ever get “done” with.  Its not a temporary thing.  It is something learned that you keep  doing for the rest of your life!  How amazing will it be for your kids to grow up with healthy eating habits!?  Can you imagine not having cravings or struggles because you were well disciplined and educated as a child!?  Remember, education, praise and patience is the key!  Good Luck!

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Tzatziki at home!!!!

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If you have never had Tzatziki (tza-tzee-kee) then you really should.  If you’ve had it and don’t like it, then you’re really weird!!!  Back in the day when I was eating grains, we would go to Pita Jungle and pig out on Tzatziki and flat bread.  YUM!!  Now, that the flat bread isn’t an option, I never really thought of making it.  But let me tell you!!  I made some today and it was incredible!!  I was looking for something to substitute ranch dressing for my kids when I cam across tzatziki.  In case you didn’t know, ranch dressing may motivate kids to eat certain things, but it is not at all good for them!  I gave my kids some of this yummy stuff for dinner and wa-lah!  Downing carrots, snap peas and broccoli with no problem at all.  It is made primarily with greek yogurt which has LOADS of protein.  This could just replace my greek yogurt/honey binge that I go into when I’m craving chocolate.  Its super easy and super tasty, so try it and let me know what you think…

Combine the first ingredients in a bowl and whisk it up really well. 

1 1/2 Tablespoons of olive oil

1/2 Tablespoon of vinegar

1 clove of garlic, finely minced

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1/8 teaspoon of white pepper ( i only had regular pepper and it was fine)

 

Once the first ingredients are mixed add to the bowl:

1 cup of greek yogurt

1 cucumber, peeled, with seeds removed and grated (like with a cheese grater)

1/2 teaspoon of chopped fresh dill ( i only had dried dill, but I’m sure the fresh stuff would be AMAZING)

 

Stir it all together until well mixed and you can’t see the oil anymore, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to let the flavors come together.  One tip I could leave with you is that after you grate the cucumber you should sandwich it between a few paper towels to get the excess moisture out.   

Use it for a veggie or meat dip, or if you are a grains person, dip the flat bread in it or put it on gyros.  Let me know what you think!

converting your favorite recipes!

Every family has their favorite recipes.  One of my favorite things to do is take our family favorites and convert them into meals that work for our diet!

Example:  My kids love to have hamburgers and french fries.  I want to make sure they are still eating the meals they love, but tweaking them so that we don’t join in on the high carb diet trend.

Dinner on Saturday:  100% ground chuck, or we use ground venison.  I add loads of spices and make them into patties and grill em’ up.  I make sure that I add quality toppings.  Bacon, avocado, onion, tomato, spinach,.  Sometimes i will splurge and let them use a bun but most of the time we have them low-carb style.  Then instead of regular fries we have sweet potato fries and the kids love those!!

Example 2:

tacos

We love mexican food at our house!  With some tweaking we can make it totally primal!  I use any type of of meat and season it with this taco seasoning:

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

I throw in onions, bell peppers, jalapenos (I take the membrane out if I’m feeding kids) tomatoes.  I let them simmer and soften.  Then instead of eating it on taco shells, we eat it as a salad.  There are extremes you can go to if you really want tortillas.  I know there is a recipe for coconut flour tortillas somewhere.  delish!

My kids love orange chicken.  Here is a sample of a recipe that has not yet been converted…

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon salt and pepper, or to taste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil coconut
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed, diced tomatoes
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 3 tablespoons sugar  honey

Here is a SUPER handy website for converting ingredients.

Now most parents will complain that their kids won’t eat some of these things.  Well, with my experience, if you keep putting the veggies on their plate day after day they get used to it.  Just don’t give up!  Try to enforce good eating habits now!

Make sure you avoid cream of whatever soups and fake foods that have 8 million ingredients.

Happy cooking!!