It’s January, so it’s the time of year when every weight loss program in existence is counting on the fact that you have over-indulged during the holidays and are feeling the bloat of those extra pounds you’ve packed on. Many of us are focused on food. Not only in January, but every month of the year. During every nanny interview at WHN, we discuss the importance of nutrition and cooking fresh food for children. Nutrition is an especially important part of the job since the nanny is often responsible for preparing two to three meals each day for the children in her charge.
The Washington Post recently published a pertinent article: “Nine do’s and a don’t” (January 1, 2015) about kids and nutrition. If you are making New Year’s resolutions for yourself about eating less and more healthy, I would love to share some of my favorite tips from the article and from my own experience that could also be resolutions (and new habits) for your children and your family:
1. Feed babies whole foods from the moment they start solids. For those of us parents who introduced a variety of real foods from the beginning and ended up with great and adventurous eaters, we know this is good advice.
2.Explain nutrition to kids at an age-appropriate level. Help your children learn why they need protein and a variety of vegetable and fruits and help them to understand why certain foods with a lot of sugar are not a good choice.
3. Teach your kids how to cook and allow them to be a part of the process even though it gets messy. They’ll be more invested in eating what they had a part in preparing. They will also be learning an incredibly useful life skill.
4. Include protein in every meal and snack.
5. Make family dinners a priority even if you can’t do it every night. Science has proven that there are many benefits of eating together as a family, including higher SAT scores.
Wishing you and your family a happy and healthy 2015!