10 nutrition tips for moms

Mom: nutrition gatekeeper (photo: Micah Sittig via Flickr)

Whether or not they asked for the job, Moms are the nutrition gate keepers of the planet.  One way or another, you first learned about food from your mom, and if you’re a mom, you’re teaching your kids.  On Mother’s Day, I’d like to give all moms some nutrition advice as a gift for those people doing the hardest job ever:

  1. Chill Out!  The level of hysteria over food and nutrition for young children has escalated beyond all reason.  It was never meant to be this complicated.  Normally healthy young children are pretty resilient when it comes to eating.  So, again, stop worrying about feeding your kids perfect diets.  There is no scientific way to feed children, despite the best efforts of food marketers to convince you otherwise and make you feel guilty.
  2. Of course kids want junk food all day long.  That doesn’t mean you give it to them, so they’re running the kitchen and the grocery list instead of you.   If they complain or throw a tantrum because you won’t give them candy or soft drinks or a bright green slushy, tune it out.  I know – that’s probably impossible, but it is the best advice.
  3. Don’t believe other mothers who brag about how their wonderful angelic 3 year-old eats nothing but organic raw broccoli and spinach and organic yogurt.  Sure they do.
  4. Be good to yourself.  Buy yourself healthy food, even if no one else in the house wants it.  And if you can’t resist junk food in the house, don’t buy it.  Your teenaged boys can find it elsewhere, if they really want to.
  5. Get your vitamin D checked.  Supplement accordingly.  This is especially critical if you’re pregnant.
  6. Let convenience be your friend when it comes to fresh vegetables and fruits.  Grocery stores are moving more to pre-cut vegetables and fruits.  While they may look expensive compared to unprepared versions, it saves you time, not to mention mess and waste.  But most important: when fresh veggies and fruit are right there ready to eat, you’re more likely to grab them for a quick snack, compared to having to take the time to wash something and cut it up.  Better to have pineapple chunks or sugar snap peas at hand than potato chips or Oreos.
  7. Eat yogurt, preferably daily.
  8. Get omega-3, from fish if you like it, or quality supplements.  And remember, not all fish is high omega-3.  The good sources are limited to salmon, tuna, sardines and mackerel.
  9. Artificial Sweeteners?  I personally never, ever recommend them.  Not for you.  Not for your kids.  It teaches you to crave excessive sweetness.  How can you appreciate a peach or 100% orange juice or plain water if you learned that food should be so treacly sweet?
  10. One vegetable-centric meal per day.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Copyright: All content © 2010-2018 Nutrition Strategy Advisors LLC. Photographs © Donna P Feldman, unless otherwise attributed. Reproduction or use without permission is prohibited.