May
 
14

Getting Healthy Over Summer Break: 10 Simple Tips

Posted by: Kelly DeVivo in Tips
 

Eat-Stop-Eat-healthy-eatingSummer is a family time full of travel and adventure.  However, it can also mean at time of too much “vacation eating”.  Of course that sounds great in the short run, but in the long run it can lead to summer colds and weight gain. So how can we keep our families feeling tip top this summer?

Well, to start with it is important to recognize that eating healthy keeps us feeling good and helps us to maintain a healthy weight.  Healthy eating includes eliminating as much junk food, fast food and processed food as possible since these foods weaken our immune system.  Additionally, if we look at the foundation of healthy eating we find fruits and veggies which actually improve our immune function. Unfortunately these are often the hardest to get into our families diets on a consistent basis.  If this is your challenge….never fear!  Below there are ten tips for getting your family to eat more of these immune boosters every day!

healthy-food1.  Start A nibble tray.  Take a muffin tin and fill each cup with a fruit or veggie and /or a healthy dip.  Leave it on the table and the kids will munch on it throughout the day.
2. Put away the junk food.  We all need a snack between meals so it is important to keep the healthy options available.  I have found in my house that if junk food is not around, we happily fill our tummies with the good stuff.  Plus junk food adds to my grocery bill without offering me any benefit for the money I am spending.
3. Freeze Fruit.  Instead of frozen treats that contain harmful sweeteners and dyes opt to freeze fruit.  Try bananas on a stick or make kabobs with pineapple, mango and grapes.
4. Grow a garden.  Research shows that kids who participate in the growing of food are much more likely to want to eat what they grow. Plus the food tastes better.
5. Add veggies to your recipes.  For example plain pasta is a simple carb but add some fresh tomatoes, onions or peppers and it begins to have some health benefits.
6. Make creative snacks.  Remember ants on a log growing up (celery with peanut butter and raisins)?   Perhaps you could make pizza faces with pita rounds, sauce, and veggies as eyes, nose and mouth and cheese as hair.
7. Put kids in charge.  Lay out some healthy ingredients and let the kids get creative.  Options include peanut butter, hummus, fruits and veggies cut into fun shapes, whole wheat crackers and so on.  Let them make their own trail mix with nuts, granola and dried fruits.  Again, kids are more likely to eat something that they created.
8. Make smoothies.  You can hide a world of seemingly yucky foods in a yummy smoothie.  For example the taste of Kale can be disguised when blended with frozen bananas, pineapple and mango.
9. Take raw fruits and veggies with you.  This will be a more filling snack while you are out and you won’t add empty calories that lead to weight gain.
10. Be a good example.  If you don’t eat veggies your kids won’t want to either.  If you are frowning at the peas on your plate, your kids will find fault with them too.  Kids will model behavior so engage in choices that you want them to mimic.

Kelly DeVivo is a Wellness Coordinator with a company that produces a raw fruit and veggie concentrate for adults and children known as Juice Plus.  For more information please visit www.giveyourbodygreens.com  or contact Kelly at 239-293-0799.

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