We all know that eating junk food is not healthy for us or our kids. So, we all strive to eat healthy and that includes feeding healthy foods to our kids. But there are some foods that are advertised as healthy, full of vitamins and nutrients, when in actuality, they are just junk. These so-called healthy foods will not only lead kids to becoming overweight, but a number of other health issues could follow down the road.
Perhaps the most common misconception is that juice is healthy for kids. Parents will pack their kids’ lunch with orange juice, grapefruit juice etc., thinking that it is packed full of vitamins. But unfortunately, it is just pure sugar. The high sugar content will raise their blood sugars so high that it’s even worse than drinking a soda. This is setting the stage for a cycle of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) in the future. This cycle of spiking blood sugars and subsequent blood sugar crashes is just going to harm the pancreas and it’s going to deplete a lot of nutrition from the body. It will likely also lead to dental problems. You might be thinking that orange juice is good because it has vitamin C. Unfortunately, there is no vitamin C in orange juice because all of these juices are pasteurized which means they are heated which kills everything in it including all of the vitamin C. The only vitamin C in orange juice is the stuff they add later but it’s synthetic. So, essentially, kids are just drinking sugar water and it’s going to create problems down the road with hyper irritability, ADD, ADHD and so on. One substitute you can try is carbonated water with flavoured stevia. Stevia comes in different flavours like root beer, lemon, fruit berry. Just take 10 drops of liquid stevia and add it to carbonated water and kids will think they’re drinking soda but there is no sugar.
Plain yogurt has 10 grams of sugar per serving! Flavored yogurt has about 38 grams of sugar per serving size. So, in one of the large tubs of yogurt, for example, there’s probably 4 servings which means that’s 38 x 4 times the amount of sugar. Yogurt is another one of those foods that is advertised as healthy, and they package them so that it’s easy and portable to pack in a kid’s lunch. But there’s so much hidden sugar in yogurt.
You may have a child who is underweight so naturally you would think that the nutritional shakes like Pedia-sure or Ensure that are supposed to be loaded with vitamins and calories for weight gain are healthy. Well, this is another item that is just loaded with tons of sugar. The first ingredient is sugar, and all the vitamins are synthetic so you’re really not getting the real deal. If you want your child to gain weight the best foods to give your child are things like potatoes such as red potatoes, yams, or sweet potatoes. Try to avoid the nutritional shakes because they’re not going to gain weight in a healthy way.
Whole grain Cereal
Firstly, most of the whole grain is made from flour that’s been sitting on a shelf for about six months. When you grind the grain, you lose a lot of nutrition right away and anything that is refined grain like breads, pasta, cereal, crackers, biscuits, waffles, pancakes, etc., should only be consumed in very small amounts. In large amounts, like you see with pasta dinners, it will lead to the child’s insulin being raised which leads to obesity and whole host of other health problems down the road. Instead of grains try proteins and vegetables that the kids like, fruits, nuts and seeds.
Minimizing grains and the other foods mentioned above can be very difficult especially when you have more then one child in an already busy household. But there are a lot of great resources for recipes that incorporate vegetables and other healthy, nutritious substitutes into foods that your kids will eat. Here is just one example https://www.freshstartnutrition.com/kid-friendly-ways-to-sneak-in-more-veggies/
As a retired registered massage therapist, I’ve always been interested in health. I grew up loving sports so that carried into my adult life in my chosen career paths and in my personal life. I now stay active with weight training, hiking and biking. My professional life has always been in health care. This has inspired me to seek out and adopt a life of natural health and wellness.