Happy Mother’s Day to All the Moms Out There!
One thing I inherited from my mom has been my love of food. A healthy relationship with food starts from day one. How food is talked about in the household can influence eating habits! My mom was a great role model when it came to family meals. In honor of Mother’s Day, I thought I would break down the top three things I learned from my mom (when it comes to food).
1. Practice what you preach. It’s as simple as that. If you’re not eating your vegetables how do you expect your kids to eat them? In my counselling practice, the most common snack I see (for parents) is chips and salsa between the hours of 4-6pm. It’s the post-work, pre-supper scramble snack. Something to take the hunger edge off before the next meal comes. One thing we want to teach kids is how to listen to their individual hunger cues. If you’ve skipped a snack or missed a meal you will most likely be starving by the time the next eating opportunity comes along. At this point you are more likely to over consume. In kids, this can lead to tummy aches and ruined meals. By creating a meal and snack schedule you help to balance the hunger scale by helping kids feel fed and happy throughout the day. So why not do the same for yourself?
2. Family meal time. We always had meals together at the kitchen table as a family. There was no TV (and no such thing as cell phones) to distract the family from enjoying our meal. We had real conversation about our day. The focus of the meal was the family, not the food! Keeping the conversation positive and pressure-free can help kids enjoy their meals. Think quality over quantity! Avoid praising kids at the dinner table. We don’t want them to think they are only good if they consume all of their food.
3. Treats were a normal thing. We would often have dessert night, which usually included homemade cookies plus an assortment of fruit (served family-style). Foods weren’t labelled “good” or “bad”. We didn’t have to eat the “healthy” fruit to get the “unhealthy” cookie. For this reason, I never grew up thinking that I was misbehaving or being bad for liking treats. Thanks to my mom I grew to like all food, treats included.
To treat your mom check this list of 20 dietitian approved brunch ideas!