Don’t let the headline sway you. You need to “eat your veggies” every month.
However, March is designated as National Nutrition Month, a time to draw attention to the importance of healthy eating and healthy lifestyles.
Search on the Internet for “National Nutrition Month” and you will be given a variety of websites offering you advice. Among those sites is the International Food Information Council Foundation with the campaign of “Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day” – see, not just in March.
“We want people to know that good nutrition does not always have to mean saying ‘no’ to your food preferences and traditions,” said Marianne Smith Edge, senior vice president, Nutrition & Food Safety, International Food Information Council Foundation.
This is the 40th year for National Nutrition Month to be recognized. Click here for more information about making healthy eating choices.
And here is a link about eating right on a budget. This site has some good advice I should heed: Don’t shop hungry! You’re more likely to buy items you really don’t need or that aren’t as healthy. Try eating a healthy snack before you shop, and the impulse to buy just anything won’t be as strong.
Some healthy eating habits I’ve heard through the years:
- Eat slowly to allow your stomach to realize when it’s full.
- Shop the outside perimeter of the store where more healthy and fresh products (like produce) are placed.
- Eat a colorful plate – green (broccoli), blue (blueberries), red (raspberries or strawberries), yellow (bananas), etc. – to get a variety of nutrients.
- Cook meals ahead on the weekend and freeze them, so you’re not as easily tempted to stop by a drive-through to pick up dinner on the way home from work.
- Pack your lunch, so you have more control over what you eat. It’s more economical, too!
Do I follow all this advice all the time? No. But I do try to be aware and make changes when I can.
So, challenge yourself this month – and, I’ll do the same — to think about nutritious choices, a benefit for you and your family.
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When I bought my niece a Ninja blender as a wedding present, I bought one for myself, too.
I had wanted one for a long time, since none of my previous blenders had actually really worked well. They’re supposed to blend, right?
For whatever reason, though, the Ninja still sat in its box for some time, waiting patiently, stealthily in a corner, for me to get up the nerve to use it. (I guess I was afraid it wouldn’t work as well as I had thought.)
The day finally came when I broke the tape, pulled off the plastic wrapping, dumped out the instructions, washed the blender parts and placed it on my kitchen countertop.
Now, it’s smooth sailing … or should I say smoothie sailing.
So far, the most popular drinks have been banana-strawberry smoothies, banana smoothies, banana-peach smoothies, chocolate-banana smoothies, strawberry-blueberry smoothies … I feel a little like Forrest Gump with my descriptions.
Needless to say, I haven’t branched out much, although I did make hummus once.
I do feel good about the kids eating more fruit, though.
No, this is not a product review or sponsored by Ninja. I just wanted this blender, because I thought it would be a good tool for the kitchen. And, I was right.
Other appliances have been useful, but beyond the toaster, KitchenAid mixer and the Keurig coffee maker (yes, another splurge), most of my small appliances are lined up along the top of my tall cabinets. Every once in a while, I’ll retrieve one to use, but these three (plus the Ninja!) are my go-to tools.
Here is how I generally make a strawberry-banana smoothie:
3 or 4 large strawberries
1 large banana
1/4 cup white grape juice
1/2 container of strawberry/banana Yoplait yogurt
4 ice cubes
Blend on high, and voila! Smoothie time!
Here are a few random links to other, perhaps even more legitimate smoothie recipes if you want to get on the smoothie kick:
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The four pillars of the First Lady’s campaign are:
Helping parents make healthy family choices;
Serving healthier food in schools;
Making healthy, affordable food more accessible;
Increasing children’s physical activity.
Since the announcement today, I’ve received e-mails or read about resounding cheers in agreement from organizations that include the American Diabetes Association, The American Academy of Pediatrics, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the American Medical Association and more.
“The physical and emotional health of an entire generation and the economic and security of our nation is at stake,” Obama said, according to a news release from the USDA. “This isn’t the kind of problem that can be solved overnight, but with everyone working together, it can be solved.”
Recent studies put the health care costs of obesity-related diseases at $147 billion per year, the USDA information stated.
Weighing in from the the pediatrics academy, Judith S. Palfrey, president of the organization that represents 60,000 pediatrician, called rescuing children’s health “a medical and moral imperative” in a news release.
“Over the past twenty years, our nation has seen an alarming rise in the number of our children who are overweight and obese. It will take a concerted effort and thoughtful collaboration to help create healthier communities for children,” she said.
The pediatric academy is asking pediatricians to start calculating the body mass indexes, or BMI, for patients over 2, among other recommendations.
The Let’s Move! campaign is a collaborative and community-oriented effort. Joining Obama for the announcement included local students, members of the president’s Cabinet, Congress members, many of the nation’s mayors and leading representatives from the fields of media, medicine, sports, entertainment and business communities.
~ Lillie-Beth Brinkman (email@example.com)
If the answer is yes, then a free workshop by the Oklahoma City-County Health Department may have all your answers.
The free parenting seminar will be at the Edmond library on Wednesday, Sept. 23, from 3:30 – 5:00 p.m. It’s perfect for parents and caregivers of children from birth to age 5. The experts from Child Guidance Services will answer questions and address concerns, and give out great information about issues related to eating. Techniques and resources will be provided.
To register, call Child Guidance at 425-4412 to register. For more information about this program and others, call 427-8651 or go to www.cchdoc.com.
I’m always saying I’ll do things different but there is no better time to set goals than the first day of the year.
Here are my Top 5 parenting resolutions for 2009:
1. Make my toddler eat vegetables. My friend bought me the cookbook “Deceptively Delicious” by Jessica Seinfeld (Jerry’s wife). I resolve to get broccoli or squash into every dish my child eats, even dessert.
2. Try to overlook the grosser things my boy does … such as drinking the bathwater. Or sticking his dirty fingers in his mouth. Or dropping food on the floor then eating it before I can pry it from his hand. (This is going to be that resolution that I end up NOT keeping.)
3. Try to limit how many times he watches Cars or WALL-E. We’ve both become addicted to those movies.
4. Try the “not-using-the-word-no-all-the-time” method. For example: Instead of saying “No, you can’t have another cookie,” say “Yes, you can have another cookie … tomorrow.” We’ll see how good that one works.
5. Get him potty trained. I would literally pay someone to do this for me. Or my son can use the “not-say-no” method just this once … “Yes, Mommy, I’ll sit on the potty … next year.”
What are your parenting resolutions? Did you make any last year? Let me know by commenting below or emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a happy, safe and healthy New Year!
If you have a toddler who is as picky as mine, I have a good morning solution for you.
For months, my 2-year-old son would eat a banana and drink a glass of milk every morning. Very nutritious and easy. But as time went by, my son stopped wanting bananas and if he did eat one, it was only because I asked him about 20 times to do it. It was becoming too much of a struggle.
So I found the perfect solution. A smoothie! One that is super-nutritious and packs him full of the good stuff like fruit, dairy, antioxidants and vitamins. It’s so easy to make, I thought I’d share it with you. Here’s all you need:
1/2 cup frozen berries or strawberries (just buy a big bag and keep it on hand)
1/2 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt
1/4 cup cranberry-pomegranate juice (the 100% juice kind – not the cocktail kind)
1/2 cup ice (I just buy a huge cup of Sonic ice and keep it in my freezer. So easy to blend and it’s only about 40 cents for a large).
Blend and there you go! It’s all you need for a serving for a hungry toddler. If you’d like to enjoy one too, just double everything except the banana.
Guaranteed, they’ll love it and they are getting all the nutrion one breakfast can give.
Do you have any toddler-tested recipes? If so, I’d love to hear about them and I bet other moms would, too!