Healthy Eating a Must
Tia Wooller - Totara Hill Montessori Preschool
Let’s Hear It For Good, Clean, Nutritious Food
(It Stops Children Wanting Junk)
Investing time and passion in your child’s eating habits gives them the gift of good health and happiness for life.
As parents we have the huge responsibility of “showing” our children how to eat well. How they eat and what they eat is learned at home.
Eating is social. It’s the experience, fun, stories and laughter that go along with it that enrich the experience. Food should be an adventure; the more interesting it is for children the better. Variety is key, next time you’re shopping pick up something you haven’t tried before. One new vegetable could make a fun game!
Get Them To Help
Include children in the preparation; it’s exciting for them. I love feeding children brussel sprouts. They’ve often never even heard of them so when they’re asked to help prepare them they’re fascinated.
Cooked perfectly with some good quality salt and a dash of olive oil I’ve seen huge quantities wolfed down by children who don’t know they are considered ‘yuck’ by a huge proportion of the population.
Smoothies are another fabulous trick. Start with fruit – maybe one banana and one or two others such as pear, apple, feijoas, persimmon, figs – and add a handful of greens. Kale, spinach and parsley are the easiest to find. Blend together in a high-speed blender until smooth, add some ice and you’ve got health and vitality in a glass.
Sprouting foods is fun. Try: lentils, mung beans, sesame or sunflower seeds.
Soak them in an Agee jar or similar for a few hours. Drain off the water. (Kingseeds.co.nz sell sprouting lids that fit these jars perfectly.) Put to one side out of direct light. Rinse twice a day and drain well. After three to five days you should get edible sprouts.
Lastly, cut the sugar. If you want to give them treats, a small amount of good quality dark chocolate is far better then a candy cane.
The keys to less junk:
- Offer kids a variety of foods
- Get them involved with the preparation
- Eat together and have fun
- Cut sugar and processed foods down or out