Living in Canada, we never had to rely on our schools to feed our children. It is the parent's responsibility to send the kids to school with a full belly and to send them nutritious food for the school day. While I am thankful that I haven't had to rely on the school lunch program to feed Mr.B, I am saddened by what I am seeing in other countries, who do have lunch programs. In the U.S, 28 million children rely on the school lunch program. As a result, we are now faced with a National Childhood Obesity Crisis. In the U.S. and around the world, children as young as 6 yrs old are faced with adult diseases such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and obesity. 38 % of children have high cholesterol and 30% of them are overweight. Due to our ignorance in school lunch programs, our children have been given a lower life expectancy than us, their parents. Scary isn't it?
I was recently approached to view and share a short film with all of you. LUNCH: What are Kids Munching On? focuses on the epidemic that we are now facing everywhere in the world. This documentary shines a light on school lunch programs, teaches parents the importance of instilling healthy habits in kids from an early age and highlights the value if gardening, local farms and fresh produce. Our children are being fed unhealthy foods in school and in turn are being taught that this kind of diet is acceptable. Did you know that most schools aren't even equipped to serve a proper meal to children. Proper kitchens are being eliminated and we are relying on processed foods that can easily be mass produced to feed our children. I don't know about you, but that is not OK with me. Us, as parents need to be involved and we should be insuring that our children get the best food for their bodies. This video is chock full of really valuable information. Go here to check out the trailer and to buy a copy, to watch for yourself. Maybe once you've watched it, you could pass it along to one of your favorite teachers, at your child's school. You could also enter to win a free copy of this informative 26 minute video, by leaving me a comment as to "how you plan to keep your kids eating healthy this summer". Contest will run from May 29- June 4th and is open to U.S residents only.
Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of the documentary to review. However, this is a subject I’m passionate about and I was not required to give a positive review. All commentary is my own.
Now with summer holidays so close by and the hot weather upon us, many of us are dreaming of ways to keep cool. My focus this summer is to keep my kids eating healthy. It's easy to be persuaded by all the adds, that we should buy ice cream, popsicles and sugary drinks; but just think of how many empty calories are in those foods. I myself am a sucker for a nice big cone of Tiger Tail ice cream, but if I were to have one every time I got hot, or was outside enjoying the nice weather..... well, let's not go there, LOL. So, I'd like to share a few ideas on how I plan to keep the kids eating healthy, so they can have the right energy this summer.
- Serve up a platter of nice cold fruit, while the kids are playing outside. Nothing is better than a snack break, when you're playing hard. The key here is color- red raspberries, strawberries or watermelon, blueberries or blackberries, pineapple, kiwi, red or green garpes. Make it even more fun and turn them into kabobs! What kid can resist food on a stick? Even if it is healthy fruit.
- Make fun ice cubes for your water. Place berries, small pieces of lemon and lime, or a piece of mint into each ice cube tray. Fill with water and freeze. As the ice cubes melt in your drink, it flavours the water and gives you a nice little snack at the end.
- Grilled veggie kabobs. Once again, food on a stick..... how fun is that? Use a variety of colourful veggies, sure to entice even the pickiest eater.
- Grow food yourself, or go to a local farm/Farmer's Market to pick some out. Let the kids touch and smell the fruits and veggies while at the market. Let them help plant the seeds and water the plants. They will be more likely to eat these foods, because they've been so hands on with the growing, or choosing of them.
The kids and I recently thought up a healthy nutritious alternative to ice cream and popsicles. We decided to make some yogurt pops, full of fresh fruit. Let me tell you, these turned out great. Slightly sweet, tart and refreshing. Perfect for those hot days, by the pool.
Homemade Yogurt Pops
2- 6oz containers of low fat peach yogurt
2 Tbs milk
1 Tbs honey
1/4 C fresh raspberries, washed
In a bowl, combine peach yogurt, milk and honey; stir well to combine completely. Chop and/or crush raspberries with a fork, leaving some pieces whole. Stir crushed berries into yogurt mixture. Pour equal amounts of yogurt into popsicle molds and insert sticks. Freeze over night, until completely frozen. To remove, dip molds into warm water for a few second.
Makes 4 medium/small pops
This post linked to
See Ya in the Gumbo
Hearth and Soul