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Nutrition and the Healthy Family

By Lianne Phillipson-Webb, Dip ION RNCP

I’ve been in the business of helping young families eat well for more than 10 years. My nutrition practice has focused on helping families; women, pre and postpartum, as well as their children, make lasting lifestyle changes with a BIG impact. And as these women have grown from attending my Mommy Chef cooking classes and Starting Solids and Beyond Workshops, they are more and more looking for ways to feed their family the right way. They have picky eaters, are worried about food allergies, know the dangers of sugar and just all-around want to make sure they are setting their children up for a lifetime of eating well, eating nutritionally.

I have a few tried-and-true so simple you’ve got no excuse tips for how to eat well as a family. And I am sharing them with you today.

Meal Planning

Preparation is the key to success: get out your notebook and PLAN PLAN PLAN your week of eating well! Here’s a story so many of us can relate to …

Karen is a busy mother of three; while her children are at school and daycare, she runs her own business. With work, school pick-up and after-school activities to manage, dinner time is a NIGHTMARE in her house. But knowing what’s for dinner, long before the dinner hour, is a saving grace.

  • Food can be prepped in the morning, and placed in the fridge or slow cooker.
  • After shopping cut up veggies and fruit for easy snacking. Create a snack drawer in your fridge where you put veggies, fruit, greek yogurt, Wise Bites and other healthy snacks.
  • Always let your meal plan for the week guide your grocery shopping: you’ll save money by sticking to the list.

Get the Family Involved in Meal Prep

Kids are funny (for so many reasons) and one thing that is just so predictable about them is that they love control. We all do right?! So it follows, then, that they are more likely to enjoy food they feel in control of. That is, if they helped prepare it, they will want to eat it. Don’t believe me, try it! How did I make sure my girls ate their lunch each day and put a stop to food waste? I had them join me in the kitchen every night and we made their school lunch together.

Watch a video of me and my daughter making her favourite school lunch here.

Eat a Rainbow of Fruits and Vegetables Every Day

I am sure you don’t need much of an explanation here; but the more colourful your diet, the more health-full it is. Ask the kids to pick out vibrant colours when in the produce section  - you can even assign a specific colour to make it a bit of a game! And encourage exploratory eating …. what new fruit or vegetable can we try today?

Follow these tips and I guarantee you will be well on your way to healthy eating. Remember, baby steps are not only a-ok, they are important. You are more likely to stick with slow, gradual shifts than complete overwhelming overhauls. For more tips, recipes and meal ideas, I’d be happy to welcome you to my website.