Well, I feel I have overloaded on the home decor posts of late (not that I could personally ever do that but I fear not everyone feels the same way!) It’s high time I posted about something different and there is an issue that has been on my mind this week – healthy snacks for our kids!
I read, as I’m sure many of you did recently, that the World Health Organisation has confirmed that processed meats – such as bacon, ham and sausages – cause cancer. I knew that there had been suggestions of this in the past, and because of this, we don’t eat a huge amount of processed meat but it did cause me to question (once again!) exactly what we are putting in our bodies and how I can balance the needs of two extremely fussy eaters, with what they will actually consent to eat!!
Our children did not have the best start to their relationship with food. They both suffered horrendous acid reflux as babies – first the milk they drank and then the food they ate caused them severe pain, gagging and spectacular vomiting which persisted well into toddlerhood. It did not lead them to develop a happy relationship with meal time and as a result, (unsurprisingly) they both became extremely fussy about what foods they were prepared to put in their mouths. It also made mealtimes a very negative experience even though we tried so hard for that not to be the case.
Now that they are older, we have obviously had time to work through most of these issues and both children eat a fair variety of foods (though the list of things they both like is extremely limited – I often think that at some point, they got together and split the entire list of foods in existence between them, agreeing that one would like one half and the other the rest!) They are however, both healthy and happy and they no longer see meal times as something to be avoided. As a result of all this, neither of the children has a particularly large appetite so they don’t eat large meals and I am reluctant to force them to continue eating after they are full. I am aware that eating more frequent, smaller meals throughout the day is a better way to stay healthy than eating fewer, larger meals so I feel that since this is their preference anyway, it’s fine for them to do this. The problem I have is in finding healthy ‘snacks’, which are also filling, not full of salt or sugar but things which are appealing so that the children are motivated to eat them.
I imagine I am not the only Mother on the planet struggling to come up with ideas for healthy snacks that will appeal to her children and with this in mind, I thought it might be useful to share some ideas here of things that might win the seal of approval with your families and mine!
I thought if I shared with you a list of all the snacks we currently offer our kids to keep them from reaching for the biscuit tin, you lovely people might share some ideas with me in return?! I need the inspiration! I really do…
So, in the spirit of sharing, here is a list of snacks that we consider ‘o.k’ to give the children between meals. The list is limited by the items they will eat and it should be noted that by no means do both children consent to eat all of the items on this list!
- Rice Cakes
- Dried fruit
- Cereal and milk
- Wholemeal pitta pockets with cheese
- Plain Crackers with butter or cheese
- Natural greek yoghurt with honey
- Plain Popcorn
- Vegetable sticks and hummus
- Boiled egg with toast soldiers
See? I said the list was short! There are plenty more things I could think of but sadly, my children won’t eat them! I should probably also say, that I realise cheese and butter aren’t exactly ‘healthy’ but at least they are good for their bones and teeth! In terms of ‘un-healthy snacks’ you can bet my kids are as keen as the next to get their fill of biscuits, crisps, ice-cream and chocolate. And sometimes, letting them have it seems like the easy option – but I’m trying (and this post is evidence of that!) to limit the number of times in a week that this happens!
So, now it’s over to you. What snacks do you give your kids (aside from those on the list above) which are both reasonably healthy and well-received?! You can comment here on the blog post, as well as on Facebook. Please also feel free to tag me on twitter using @homeheart3h or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will then write another post sharing with you all the ideas I have received so that we can all benefit from our pooled suggestions. Come on, don’t leave me hanging…..
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