Have you ever said goodbye to ‘Gorgeous” in the morning and then welcomed home ‘Grumpy’ in the afternoon after too much sugar in their day?
New research is revealing that kids and teens can underpin their concentration, energy, emotions, and healthy bodies simply by making some small lifestyle changes.
Did you know?
- 1 in 10 kids is diagnosed with ADHD, which makes concentration very difficult for them.
- 1 in 3 kids has hormonal skin and cycles which affects their happiness.
- 1 in 3 kids has allergies related to food, which affects their mood and sleep
- 1 in 4 kids in Australia has more body fat than they require, which zaps their energy.
- Every kid would like to feel good about themselves and get rid of those ‘self esteem bombs’ that rob them of their energy, brain power and feel-good hormones.
The good news is that food – quality nourishment – can dramatically improve all of these issues.
There are four key foundations for a balanced moods, improved energy and brain power;
1. Real food without added sugar
2. Some grains;
3. Fat eaters,
4. Veggie munchers
Plastic cheese is not something your grandparents would recognise as real food. It is really quite simple, each week start ‘crowding in’ so much good, real food that your family doesn’t realise that the packaged cereals, processed muesli bars, and high sugar lollies are missing.
How to tell real food? A quick easy way is that it often doesn’t have a label. Read food doesn’t have added, hidden sugar. Natural sugar, in small doses, found in dairy and fruit is quite useful for the active child.
• Have fun on Sundays making some homemade muffins, cookies, and bliss balls. You get to control the ingredients and the amount of sugar. Make enough for a few days and store in the fridge. See www.myfamilywellness.com.au recipe below.
• Seeds or Nuts, seasonal fruit, ‘Clean ingredient” muesli bars
There is a bit of grain discrimination going on in the world. One of the issues with grain is that is often highly processed – like wheat. Even when bread is whole grain, we don’t get the same nutrient density from this carbohydrate as other foods and because it has been heavily processed it may cause reactions in our bodies that our grandparents never saw when they ate bread. Preferred carbohydrate sources are vegetables, legumes and gluten-free grains like basmati or brown rice, quinoa, millet, and buckwheat. Also they are loaded with vitamin B, which is not only our energy vitamin but we need “b’s” to convert some of our amino acids to serotonin, our happy hormone.
• Wholegrain chicken avocado roll with some of the bread inside hollowed out. Why? We like the grain and also to be able to add extra chicken and avo for blood sugar stabilizing.
• Dinner is the most thought about meal of the day, so cook enough for the lunchbox or lunch thermos the following day. For example lets say you had a chicken stir fry, simply add some brown rice or quinoa to it the following morning.
Fat feeds our brain, balances hormones, and provides us with a feeling of fullness. Good bye ‘hangry’ child. Enjoy ‘good fats’ like avocado, olive oil, walnut oil, chia, linseeds, salmon, trout, olives, (other) seeds and nuts but enjoy the other fats too. Butter, nut butters, coconut oil, coconut milk, cheese, and a modest amount of saturated fat has been found ‘not guilty’.
• If your school allows nuts, that is an excellent source of protein and fat, but if they don’t think about seeds like pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower seeds and some preservative free sultans mixed in.
• Some cheese with rice or grain crackers will keep a child fueled and happy far longer than a handful of jelly snakes.
Eat raw, dip in hummus, wrap in tortilla. Stir fry, bake, steam, spice, or BBQ them. It doesn’t really matter how they are consumed. They are full of fibre, vitamins, nutrients, enzymes and nourishment.
Food is meant to be enjoyed. Bring back the love of the lunchbox. It doesn’t need to be extreme; it needs to be easy and tasty. When a child is truly nourished, their food stabilises their mood, hormones, emotions and creates lean, healthy immune systems and bodies.
• Bake a tray of sweet potato cubes. After you cube the potato, coat in some melted coconut oil, sprinkle sea salt and bake on 160 until slightly brown.
• Take from the tray of roast veggies from the night before a handful of leftovers, toss in wide mouth thermos with a half a can of chick peas, olive oil, lemon and sea salt.
Are you or members of your family often cranky, tired or unwell?
Michele is about to kick off her next Low Sugar Kids 28 Day Challenge and can help you and your family experience better physical, mental and emotional health through a Low Sugar Lifestyle.
Join us on this 28 day program as Michele will teach you how to make subtle changes in the food we eat and how this will impact on the moods, behaviour and physical and emotional wellbeing of your family.
This is not no sugar, this is low sugar.
Michele makes things easy for busy parents and understands the time and cost pressures families are under. No calculations, no counting, no points, just clean, real, whole food. Her meal plans are simple and easy with dinner leftovers quickly and easily becoming delicious lunches the next day, saving you time and money. Plus her special introductory joining price is just $79 for the four week program – less than the cost of a coffee per day.
You’re in great hands with Michele, she’s a nutritionist and an active member of the Australian Traditional Medicine Society. With years of clinical experience at her busy practice, A Healthy View under her belt, she’s also a health writer and speaker. And most importantly, she’s a mum!
Michele is a Jamie Oliver Food Revolution Ambassador, the author of ‘Beating Sugar Addiction for Dummies’ and is a regular contributor to Women’s Fitness, The Sunday Telegraph, Body & Soul and Sunrise Channel 7 Weekend Breakfast show.