As parents and grandparents, we are asked to wear many hats. Shopper, cook, chauffeur, supporter and advocate. How can we create a home environment that is nurturing and nourishing to our families and take care of ourselves at the same time?
- It takes a village. Have your kids help with the grocery list or depending upon their age, the actual grocery shopping. Kids can help to portion and prepare foods for immediate use or for storage. They can help to prep and portion after school snacks as well.
- Get kids involved in packing their sports bags and including not only shoes, uniform and equipment but also fueling options such as trail mix, a granola bar or piece of fresh fruit.
- Be a nutrition coach at home. After sports, encourage kids to rehydrate and restore with fluids and fuel. MOO’V™ is a fantastic way to refresh, replenish and replete after a sports practice or game AND it won’t ruin appetite for dinner.
- Be a body positive advocate. Do not self-criticize your body or talk about “bad” foods or what you aren’t eating in front of your kids. Be a role model for healthy eating behaviors by taking the time to eat, having a variety of foods on your plate in a portion that feels appropriate for you.
- Don’t be the food police. There is no need to forbid desserts, candy or savory snacks and doing so may increase the likelihood that your kids will overindulge when they have access to those foods. But do consider this, instead of having several different types of cookies, chips, or ice cream, maybe just a few. Have your kids put the cookies on a plate, or a scoop of ice cream in a cone, or a handful of chips in a bowl and then sit down and savor them instead of just eating out of the container or bag.
Creating a food and eating environment that is conducive to health is a win-win for us all, big and small.
Leslie Bonci, MPH, RDN, CSSD, LDN, is the Dietary & Nutrition Strategic Advisor at Dari® and MOO’V™ milk. With over two decades of experience, she is an expert in nutrition with many of Leslie’s blog posts center around active eating and fueling for sport. She is the Head Nutritionist for the Kansas City Chiefs and has been a consulting sports dietitian in the NFL, MLB, and NHL, and worked with Olympic athletes. Bonci has co-authored three books with an active eating focus, is a blogger for US News Eat + Run, and is a sought-after expert for television, radio, print and online media, Bonci speaks regularly on topics including “sciensationalism,” “fuels of engagement” and “communication with conviction” to help influencers and consumers debunk the junk and separate fact from fallacy.