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Healthy Meal Ideas for Toddlers

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My little girl just turned 3, and it just keeps getting harder to get her to eat healthy foods. The key, I think, is to just keep trying healthy choices. Here are a few ideas:

Breakfast
Meal 1: Whole grain waffles with peanut butter (instead of syrup) with a side of bananas.
Meal 2: Sausage links and scrambled eggs with a side of oranges and blueberries.
Either of these will keep your little one full and focused!

Lunch
Meal 1: Homemade veggie soup with whole grain crackers.
Meal 2: Baked chicken, cheese cubes, carrots with ranch, and pretzels.
Meal 3: Bbq shredded chicken on wheat sandwich thins, tomatoes and cucumbers on the side.
All of these options would give picky eaters plenty of good choices.

Dinner
Meal 1: Baked chicken, baked sweet potato, corn on the cob.
Meal 2: Homemade chicken noodle soup with whole wheat ritz crackers.
Meal 3: Salad.. Lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, boiled eggs, shredded cheese, and very little dressing.
Lots of variety to keep your toddler trying new foods!

I hope this gave you some ideas to help keep your toddler full and focused! What are some of your favorite meals?

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Choosing A Healthy Breakfast Cereal

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Cereal is healthy, right? Sometimes! Cereal has been lumped into the healthy category, but sometimes it is far from it. In this blog, I will teach you how to choose a healthy cereal, instead of one packed with added sugar.

There are three basic things to look for when choosing your cereal.
1. Sugar – for obvious reasons. You don’t want to start your day with a huge amount of sugar.
2. Fiber – this will be what keeps you full. It also shows that the cereal isn’t very highly processed or refined.
3. Sodium – also known as salt. Cereal is processed, so it’s important to look at the sodium content.

According to Becca Bristow, a registered dietitian on YouTube, a good round cereal contains less than 9g of sugar, more than 4g of fiber, and less than 140mg of sodium.

Let’s look at a few examples.
1. Kashi Go Lean

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Sugar: 8g
Fiber: 13g
Sodium: 115mg
This is a great cereal to start off your day!

 

2. Special K Red Berries

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Sugar: 9g
Fiber: 3g
Sodium: 190mg
This cereal wouldn’t be a terrible choice, but the fiber content is lower than we would like and the sodium is just a little higher than we would like.

3. Honey Smacks

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Sugar: 15g!
Fiber: 1g
Sodium: 40mg
This one surprised me! The sodium on this one is actually great, but the other two factors just knock it out of the park. With 15g of sugar and only 1 tiny little gram of fiber, this is a terrible choice to start your day. Since this one doesn’t contain marshmallows, chocolate, or anything frosted, you would think it would be relatively healthy. Just goes to show how deceiving certain foods can be.

What do you think? What is your favorite breakfast cereal?

Becca’s video: The Skinny on Cereal | Healthy vs. Not-So-Healthy

 

Added Sugar vs. Natural Sugar

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Sugar is sugar, right? Not true. According to Anjali at thepickyeater.com, there is a huge difference between sugar that has been added to our food and sugar that naturally occurs.

Added sugar is basically any sugar or sweetener that has been added to a food product during processing or preparation. This can include putting sugar in your morning coffee, eating flavored yogurt, or adding sugar to your cereal.

Natural sugar is sugar that is part of a whole food. This includes lactose in milk or fructose in apples. This type of sugar acts different in our bodies because of the protein, fiber, and water that accompany them in a whole food. They are also lower on the glycemic index than added sugar.

For example, an apple has 19g of sugar and a Hershey’s Almond Bar has 18g of sugar. Even though there is less sugar in the candy bar, it would be easier on your body to eat the apple since it has naturally occurring sugar.

What do you think?

Anjali’s article: http://pickyeaterblog.com/the-difference-between-added-sugar-and-natural-sugar/

Smoking Cigarettes- Good or Bad?

Everyone knows that “smoking is bad for you.” One out of every six people die each year from smoking related illnesses, in the U.S. alone. But what if someone told you that smoking can actually be good for you?

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A few examples:

  1. Nicotine enhances our ability to think, perform, and take tests.
  2. Nicotine increases our memory function.
  3. Smoking is a good way to let off steam, relax, or concentrate.

If you don’t think about all of the health risks and diseases that it can cause, smoking seems to be on the up and up. Smokers need to realize the harm they are causing themselves for no reason other than pleasure. Lung disease, heart problems, yellow teeth, and shortness of breath could have been prevented by throwing away that pack of menthols, and having good concentration, memory skills, being able to relax, and losing a few pounds can be achieved in other ways than lighting up a Marlboro.

What is your opinion?

This blog correlates with my Module 4 digitized paper: smokingresearch

Coconut Oil- Good or bad?

In the past few years, coconut oil has come to light as one of the most multipurpose “tools” to have in your home. From cooking to beauty, coconut oil has taken over! But can it actually be doing more harm than good?

According to Beth from redandhoney.com, coconut oil is considered to be fairly comedogenic- meaning it clogs your pores! So, instead of coconut oil being a godsend of sorts, it is actually clogging your pores and causing you to break out!

Unfortunately, many of the people who are using this “miracle” are thinking that it is just their skin acclimating to this new, natural product. Little do they know, it is actually making their skin worse!

What do you think? Is coconut oil healthy for your skin and all the other uses that people are bragging on it for?

 

Below is Beth’s post from redandhoney.com. 🙂

Why I Stopped Using Coconut Oil as a Skin Moisturizer