Oh yes, the joy of your life...your children. They complete you. They give your life meaning. They fill your days with...food! That's right. While your children may well be the best thing that ever happened to you, they are probably not the best things that ever happened to your waistline. Indeed, they make you gain weight before you even lay eyes on them. Children and food: can't have one without the other.
As a mother of three, I have first hand experience with this issue and helped many clients through the same. Here are some of the best things I've learned along the journey of parenthood.
Top Nutrition Tips for Moms and Families
Start your day strong with a good breakfast (and it doesn't have to be first thing). If you aren't hungry at 7 am, it is OK to wait until 830 or 9 am. Go for either 0 or 2% Greek Yogurt with some high-fiber granola and berries or 2% cottage cheese and fiber crackers or hard boiled eggs with fiber crackers. For your kids, try gluten-free waffles or Bitsy's Brainfood Smart Cereal. It's a gluten-free cereal made with veggies and packed with vitamins to start their day off right, but with fun names and colorful designs, your kids will love it!
- Buy yogurt or cottage cheese in individual containers so you can just grab and go (have some plastic or wood spoons on hand). They also make single-serve cereal in mini containers as well as the GG Crackers in 2 cracker packs. Individual packs are great for busy moms...perfect for portion control, and perfect for on the go, perfect for staying healthy!
- Don't be afraid to eat sandwiches! A turkey sandwich on wheat is a great option for a busy mom or for your kid's lunch box. First of all, it can be less calories than a huge salad. It is also a quick option, you can find it everywhere and it is lower in volume than many salads. The bread is finite and serves a purpose, unlike break in a bread basket.
- Get your water on earlier in the day! Chug that first liter right after drop off! Don't delay that first liter of water or you'll never get it in. Water is hugely powerful in weight loss, it can help you fight off the munchies later in the day and it can help you fight those unwanted pounds. If you wait until pick up to start your water, you'll never get in those 8 glasses. This way you'll have one liter done by lunch and can work on the second liter before you pick up your little ones in the afternoon.
- Stop the picking off your little ones plates. These calories count DOUBLE! The bites, picks, tastes when you clean their plates...they all add up and can be adding 1000's of calories to your intake daily. To help yourself, pop a breath strip in your mouth, rely on your bottle of water, try chewing sugarlress gum or cut-up your own veggies to keep in front of you while the kids eat.
- I always tell my moms to try to give themselves two hours every week for food planning and prep time. You can do it on the weekend when your partner can take over or while the kids are napping or at soccer practice. Take this time to map out your week: dinners at home, dinners out, shopping list, and so on. The key words are planning and organizing! And just two hours a week can do it.
- There's nothing like exercising with your kids to set a healthy example. Go for a jog with your baby in the stroller or go to the park with older kids, play their favorite sports with them, go swimming. Make being active the fun part of the day!
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