To My Little People,
Please have a healthy relationship with food.
I love treats. Salty, sweet, chocolatey, chewy, crunchy, hot or cold…I’m an equal opportunity snacker. Sadly, I do not have a healthy relationship with food. I sneak food, I hide food and I sometimes I eat too much.
I’m working on it. Every day I work on it. I try convince myself I’ll eat in moderation and the package of whatever it is will last days or weeks even. I have good intentions. I have the best intentions. Then I eat the whole thing in one night and I feel terrible. Blerg!
Over the past few years, my new approach has been to try to not eat anything I wouldn’t be willing to share with my little people. I felt very strongly about keeping them away from sweets and treats for their first two years, hoping this would give them a good head start and an appreciation for a wide range of healthy foods. Their first birthday “cake” was homemade apploatmeal (apple sauce + oatmeal) in a cupcake wrapper. Everyone teased me, but they loved it.
I try very hard to respect their ability to moniter their own hunger cues and listen when they tell they’re hungry or full. None of that you-must-eat-everything-on-the-plate-filled-up-for-you-by-a-hungry-adult nonsense. If I’m not sure if they’re done eating, or just done being away from their books and toys and outside, I have them put their little hands on their belly, take a breath and ask themselves, “How do you feel?”
We talk a lot about good-for-you foods vs. sometimes foods.
Sometimes I miss eating chocolate and cookies for breakfast. Sometimes I miss eating a whole bag of licorice in one sitting.
Sometimes doing the right thing for my little people means doing the right thing for me too. This had better work!
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