Recently, my kids have gone from eating their brown rice and veggies, quinoa with garlic and ginger, and organic poultry, fish, and meats to wanting only fruit and dairy and grains. They’d probably want coke all the time except that stuff has never passed their lips so they don’t know what they are missing. And that’s why they prefer the starchier, sweeter stuff. They’ve had it and they’re not naïve anymore to the big world of junk food. I should have kept them in the dark…
Anyway, my only hope is to have them be hungry enough at meal time so that they’ll eat what I have to offer. I don’t plan on being cruel and force feeding them what they don’t like. But I need them not to eat processed foods and I want to avoid scenarios where they tire me out to the point of desperately feeding them crappy sugar laden breakfast cereal “Fine, you win! Just stop the whining!” (yes, it’s happened).
I’m going to close the kitchen. I grew up hearing that children require snacks in between meals because they’re growing and they get hungry more often. But, I have been learning more and more about nutrition from experts and many of them hold the opinion that we should be hungry before meals and we shouldn’t snack all doggone day-and this includes children. And while I don’t think snacking is a sin, I do think that for me and my kids it’s become an inconvenient appetite destroyer.
I try to make every meal and not pull it out of a box. I also eat different foods than my kids. And my husband eats different foods from me and the kids. So by the time dinner rolls around I’ve made seven different meals and cut up fruit or vegetables or cheese for snacks and it just hit me that I practically live in the kitchen. Not cool. I grew up hearing the whole “pregnant and barefoot in the kitchen” saying and swore I’d NEVER spend too much time in the kitchen. In fact, when I was pregnant, I looked down to find myself barefoot in the kitchen, freaked out, and quickly got some shoes on my swollen feet. You can say feminism has scarred me. Whatever. Point is, I hate looking at food all day you know? It says, “eat me!” and so all day I’m fighting the temptation to eat the kid’s whole wheat pasta or my husband’s rice and beans. Or I’m sneaking in a bite of food here and there and realizing that one bite of food is enough to throw blood sugars and weight loss efforts. It’s exhausting.
So I’m closing the kitchen. I’m going to make sure the kids eat a good breakfast and then I’ll have my grapefruit or avocado or whatever I’m having and then kitchen closed. It will reopen for lunch and then it will close. It will reopen for dinner and then it will close. My kids are used to a bottle of milk or coconut milk or almond milk before bed. I’ll leave them that luxury. But snacks in between meals? Nope. I need them hungry enough to eat what I know is best for them to eat. I mean who’s in charge here? Me or them?
Ok, I’ve adequately pep talked myself. Let’s do this!
(I’ll keep you posted on our progress…or lack thereof :)
Do any of you stick to three meals and no snacks during the day? If so, how does it work for you?