Tuesday, December 28, 2010

#1 Snack Attack Tip

What is the snack you reach for most often? Is it a soft drink, cookies, candy or chips? If so, is it time for a “Snack Attack”?

What's our #1 Snack Attack tip?

Serving sizes matter! Look at what and how much you eat.
  • First, choose a packaged food that is one of your typical snacks.
  • Without looking at the food label, place the amount you eat on a plate and then use a measuring cup (or count the pieces) to determine your usual portion size.
  • Now compare this to what is identified as a serving on the food label. Is there much of a size difference?
Attack snacks” by choosing a little less when you eat high fat and sugar snacks – or eat them less often. To see what a difference it can make, consider the following:

  Compare different portions of following snacks’ serving sizes:
  • 1 oz. (10-15) Potato Chips—about 153 calories and 10 grams fat
  • 2 oz. (20-30) Potato Chips—about 306 calories and 20 grams fat
  An extra 10-15 chips adds around 150 calories and 2 teaspoons of fat.
  • 12 oz. Soft Drink—about 160 calories and 43 grams sugar
  • 20 oz. Soft Drink—about 270 calories and 72 grams sugar
  Save 110 calories and about 7 teaspoons of sugar by choosing a 12 oz can

Set a goal for your family to read labels of your favorite snacking foods to learn about serving sizes, and to recognize fat and sugar content!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Eat Your Colors of Fruits & Veggies

Healthy Kids Challenge*, a leading national nonprofit, is dedicated to solutions that help kids and families enjoy healthier eating and an active lifestyle. Take a fresh approach to eating your colors of Fruits & Veggies - Every Day the Tasty Way!

Eating 5-9 servings of fruits and veggies each day in a “rainbow of colors” is a clue to the vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytochemicals that keep us feeling great.
Eat your colors daily using the 5 fruit and veggie color groups as a guide.

blue/purple -- green -- white -- yellow/orange -- red
Purple figs
Purple grapes
Purple Belgian endive
Green apples
Leafy greens
Snow peas
White peaches
Blood oranges
Red peppers

It's easy to eat Fruits & Veggies-Every Day the Tasty Way!
  • Breakfast - 100% orange juice (yellow/orange)
  • Lunch - purple grapes (blue/purple), cucumber and tomato slices (green and red)
  • Dinner - spinach salad (green), strawberries (red)
  • Snacks - raisins (blue/purple), banana (white)
And then try some of these tips to help your family eat the colors every day!

Healthy Kids Challenge encourages the “start where you are” approach. Start with one extra fruit and veggie at a time. “More is Better” when it comes to fruits and veggies!
  • Take your kids to the grocery store and explore different options of fruits and veggies.
  • Have your kids pick a new fresh fruit or veggie to try. What about tangerines, cabbage, or Kohlrabi? 
  • Stroll by the frozen foods section and choose frozen fruits to mix in a yogurt smoothie.
  • Take a look at dried cherries, apricots, raisins, and cran-raisins as quick snacks or salad toppings.
  • Stock your cupboards with canned fruits and veggies to provide healthy choices any time of year!
Set a family goal to add a greater variety of fruit and veggie “colors” this next week. See who can eat from all 5 colors in a day!

*Healthy Kids Challenge is a nationally recognized nonprofit whose mission is to help school, health, business and community leaders take action for kids to eat, move, and enjoy a healthy balance.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

3 Tips for Kids’ Health during the Holidays

1. Role-model Healthy Behaviors
  • Show your kids how to eat healthy portions of foods and treats by using moderation in your own eating.
  • Choose to eat healthy snacks between meals like raw veggies and low fat Ranch dressing, low fat cheese and whole grain crackers, or fruit.
2. Plan ahead for holiday eating.
  • Offer to bring a fruit or veggie platter with a low fat dip to a gathering, so you can ensure there will be lower fat/sugar foods to eat.
  • Choose your beverages wisely. Set a limit for higher sugar/fat drinks (punch, soda, egg nog). Water is your healthiest choice!
3. Plan ahead for physical activity.
  • Get up a little earlier to stretch or do yoga for a great start to your day!
  • Climb the stairs, park a little further away--add more movement in your daily routines.
Send me other tips that have worked for you!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

4 Healthy Tips for the Hectic Holiday Season

Too busy to keep up with a healthful routine this holiday season?

The hectic holiday season is here, which means little time will be left for keeping up with a healthy lifestyle. Healthy Kids Challenge Partner in Health Nestlé Pure Life has four easy tips to keep you on track all season long.

Traveling? Remember Active Play Every Day! Don’t forget to pack your sneakers or walking shoes! Check out your accommodations before you get there to see what they have to offer. Is there a gym, pool, or any walking activities you can take part in?

Shopping? While shopping this holiday season, you can find many opportunities to be active just by hustling from store to store and standing in line. Also, whenever possible, try parking farther from the store and taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

Hydrated? Do a Drink Think! Remember to grab a bottled water for the road! As you get extra busy during the holiday season juggling work, home and errands you may not meet your fluid needs. And a lack of water can leave you dehydrated; even mild dehydration can drain your energy. That’s why keeping yourself hydrated during this time of year is just as important as any time of the year.

Skipping meals? Discover Smart Servings! Trying to save calories for a big party or get-together? Skipping breakfast and/or lunch to bank your calories isn’t a good idea. A better bet: Eat breakfast and lunch as usual, but trim a few calories from each meal. That way you have a few extra calories to spend at the holiday get-together.
Cheers to a healthy holiday season from Healthy Kids Challenge and Nestlé Pure Life!