10 Easy Ways to Eat Healthy

10 Easy Ways to Eat Healthy

Switch the Original Food for a Healthy Alternative

Healthy food alternative for kids (and adults) with tips and tricks on ways to eat healthy. Even for the pickiest of eaters! Get involved, model healthy behaviors, keep trying new foods and if all else fails… sneak those healthy ones in!

{ Printable Grocery List }

1. Mashed Potatoes   for   Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

Roasted Mashed Cauliflower

Photo Credit: About.com

While I like these, Ryan will probably need a little more convincing. I tried a ½ regular mashed potato + ½ cauliflower mashed potato ratio and after that he didn’t even notice.

WHY? Cauliflower-containing diets have been linked to cancer prevention. The detox support provided by cauliflower includes antioxidant nutrients to boost the body’s detox system and its antioxidant system.

 

2. Store bought french Fries   for   Homemade Sweet Potato Fries (baked in oven)

Photo Credit: SimplyRecipes.com

Our homemade sweet potato fries came out tasting like marshmallows! They were a great side dish to oven baked chicken. Kid tested, mother approved! :)

WHY? Besides being packed with vitamins, nutrients and fiber, sweet potatoes are an excellent carbohydrate resource. They can help regulate blood sugar levels and prevent conditions like insulin resistance.

 

3. Ready-Made Pancakes   for   Homemade Whole Grain Pancakes

Whole Wheat Pancake Mix Recipe

Photo Credit: AllRecipes.com

I used to be a huge fan of the “Ready Pour,” “Just Add Water,” and frozen pancake selection. Mainly because they were cheap, easy and fast… plus Ryan loves them. However, these were little more than glorified cake mix. I make a couple dozen at a time and freeze a few for later. You can get extra sneaky with these and try adding flax seed oil!

WHY? Studies show that eating whole grains instead of refined grains lowers the risk of many chronic diseases and symptoms: stroke, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, weight management, asthma, inflammatory disease risk, cancer, blood pressure and gum disease.

 

 

4. Frozen Chicken Nuggets   for   Homemade Popcorn Chicken

popcornchickensm.jpg

Photo Credit: HeavenlyHomemakers.com

Like many children, chicken nuggets have become a staple in Ryan’s diet. After seeing/hearing what goes into the super processed chicken nuggets, I set out to find a healthy alternative. He actually preferred the homemade popcorn chicken OVER the frozen chicken nuggets.

WHY? Making homemade popcorn chicken gives you the opportunity to use antibiotic free, grass fed meat and whole grain coating (without asking yourself, made with white-meat… and what else?)

 

5. Store bought fruit or yogurt smoothies   for   Homemade Fruit Smoothie

Protein-Packed Smoothie

Photo Credit: BHG.com

It says V8 on the bottle, so it must be good for you, right? I was surprised to see how much sugar was in these smoothies! Plus, processing fruit and vegetables strips most of the nutrients out of the food. I started keeping a couple frozen bananas, strawberries, and blueberries in the freezer so I can whip up a super easy smoothie whenever we want! No added sugar! PLUS, I can sneak in added ingredients like chia seeds or a handful of spinach in without Ryan even knowing.

WHY? Nothing can compete with raw fruits and vegetables when it comes to packing in nutrients that support overall health: helps your immune, synthesizes collagen that aids in the framework of your body, supports your heart function, helps maintain a normal blood pressure, promotes healthy cells, contain antioxidants that decrease inflammation, keeps your bones strong, level blood sugar, control thyroid gland and keeps nerves, vision and immune system function properly.

 

6. Peanut Butter   for   Natural Peanut Butter (or Almond Butter)

Photo Credit: Justins.com

Peanut butter jelly time… All the time. I couldn’t omit it, so how could I improve it? For starters we made sure our bread was whole wheat. Then, I started mixing almond butter with peanut butter. Almond butter/natural peanut butter definitely has a different taste. It’s less sweet and creamy. However, I found that mixing the two together makes transitioning a little easier.

WHY? Peanut butter is high in protein but usually is full of hydrogenated oils, sugars, and other preservatives. Almond butter has more fiber, iron,Vitamin, 50% more monounsaturated fat (good fat) and 25% less saturated fat (bad fat).

 

7. Hamburger   for   Turkey Burger

Actually Delicious Turkey Burgers Recipe

Photo Credit: AllRecipes.com

Seriously, so easy. And Ryan? Didn’t. Even. Flinch.

 

WHY? Please note: pre-made burgers usually contain more sodium, fat and additives. Try getting freshly ground meat from the meat department. Turkey burger is much leaner than regular ground beef. Plus, again, you can control the meat you’re putting on your plate: is it antibiotic/hormone free and/or grass fed?

 

4oz raw ground turkey (85% lean) : Calories 168 / Total Fat (g) 9.3 / Sat. Fat (g) 2.5 / Protein (g) 19.7 / Sodium (mg) 106
4oz raw ground beef (85% lean) : Calories 243 / Total Fat (g) 17 / Sat. Fat (g) 6.6 / Protein (g) 21 / Sodium (mg) 75

 

 

8. Store Bought Frozen Novelties   for   Homemade Fruit Sorbet

Strawberry-Black Pepper Sorbet Recipes

Photo Credit: CookingLight

 

While he’s known to enjoy popsicles, push-ups and sherbet, I much prefer to serve him up some frozen fruit. Not only is this a fun thing to make together, it tastes great, has less sugar and all natural ingredients. We also love making homemade fruit pops in ice cube trays or the popsicle molds.

 

WHY? Less sugar, natural ingredients. Like the fruit smoothies, you can also get sneaky with adding spinach, chia seeds and whatever else you feel you can slip past your little one!

 

9. Granola Bars   for   Homemade Granola Bars or No Bake Energy Bites

Photo Credit: GimmeSomeOven.com

I’ll admit, I love granola bars. You know why? Because most of them are basically candy bars. These were an awesome alternative. They’re easy to store and a quick snack to take on the go.

WHY? Your own recipe can include whole grains, natural sweeteners, healthy nuts and dried fruit, with protein and fiber. Packed with natural energy to keep you going! No high-fructose corn syrups here! Plus, you have the option of using natural peanut butter / almond butter over regular peanut butter or steel cut oats over instant oatmeal.

 

10. Juice boxes   for   Fruit Infused Water

Flavored_Water7_Copy.jpg

Photo Credit: TheYummyLife.com

Ryan used to drink the Capri-Suns Roarin’ Waters (flavored water juice boxes) until there were high numbers of reports of mold being found inside the containers. While the mold wasn’t harmful, it freaked me out. We’re trying fruit infused water instead. Plus, we’re freezing different fruit inside ice cubes to make it fun and interesting.

 WHY? Children ages 1 to 6-years-old should consume no more than 4 to 6 ounces of juice per day. …and that’s 100% JUICE, not fruit drink or flavored sugar water (which is not recommended at all). High levels of juice consumption have been linked with weight problems. You can’t go wrong with drinking water and eating real fruit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have you ever sneaked healthy ingredients into your child’s food? What was it? How did go over?

2 comments

  1. Aqua Pure Solutions August 22, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    Thanks Sara – these are great tips for eating and drinking healthy! Really like the idea of naturally falovered waters too – that’s a tips we can share with our clients who filter their water at home.

  2. McPherson Dental Care September 3, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    Such yummy ideas! Thanks for posting this. A healthy mouth is entirely dependent on a healthy diet and healthy habits. These are great substitutions!
    McPherson Dental Care recently posted…Mouth Guards: An Essential Piece of Sporting EquipmentMy Profile

Leave a reply

captcha
Required fields are marked (*)

CommentLuv badge

TOP