7 Surprising Foods Your Children Should Avoid
We tend to feed kids “on the go” or to rely on foods that are “finger foods” and easy to eat without stopping and sitting down. Now that right there is a huge problem because this is a very unhealthy approach to nutrition. If you are just throwing food at a child or teenager in order to get them to eat something, you are not properly monitoring their nutritional health. We suggest that at least one family meal, or meal seated around a table each day, helps to ensure your child is getting at least one very balanced meal each day. We also suggest that you eliminate the following “carbohydrate” soaked foods from their diets.
You may be shocked by the contents of the following foods, and you may not understand where there is harm in giving them to kids. Let’s just consider how carbohydrates work, and then consider how this applies to the foods which should be kept to a minimum.
Carbs are broken down by the body and converted into “glucose” that create a source of energy. An easy way to understand this is by categorizing them into two primary types – the simple and the complex. The simple carbs are found in refined sugars and are basically “empty calories” that contain very little nutrition (rice cake). The simple sugars also lead to a sense of hunger sooner because they are processed so quickly and create a release of insulin. Insulin is responsible for storing glucose in the cells, like the fat cells.
The complex carbs are the foods that are designed with low amounts of sugar, higher amounts of fiber and water, think natural food like vegetables, and even some fruits would be the best sources of these. They take a while to digest, create balanced energy, and generally allow someone to feel fuller longer.
So, if you are allowing kids to consume foods with a lot of carbohydrates, and which are also the simple rather than complex carbohydrates, then you will soon find that your children eat more causing them to gain weight. What are these foods to avoid? They include:
Bagels and breakfast cereals
A single bagel is so carbohydrate rich that on average it contains around 50g of carbohydrates in it. That’s about as much as I recommend some adults (one’s resistant to losing weight) should consume in an entire day.
Energy drinks or sport drinks
These boast of their caffeine and glucose levels meant to give athletes a boost. When consumed by kids who are sitting at school or even playing a short amount of sport they are very unhealthy.
Specialty coffee drinks
More and more often, I see children ordering drinks like the Iced Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha when I’m at Starbucks. These drinks are loaded with sugar and caffeine. Not a good idea when you’re going through a growth spurt. Do you remember drinking caffeine when you were a kid? I don’t.
Comedian Dave Chapelle once said that when he was young he would have “purple drink” which was composed of water, sugar and purple. Well, the juice is no different. Think about it; If a diabetic needs a fast acting sugar to regulate their blood sugar what do they head for? Orange juice or grape juice because it’s quick. All the claims of vitamins and minerals are simply marketing mambo jumbo to make you justify how healthy it is. Eat the fruit, don’t buy the juice.
Canned soups are full of sugars (carbs) and sodium packed in a BPA lined can. Most canned foods should be heavily scrutinized for these bad ingredients but we tend to forget about them.
Fruit based products and even dried fruit
But it’s made with 100% real fruit! It’s all bad. It’s loaded with sugar and when it’s dried; its sugar potency is increased.
Very few commercial crackers are made with a short list of ingredients, and most are filled with hydrogenated oils (trans fat) full of empty calories and carbohydrates.
It’s easy to assume that children will simply burn off all the extra energy they take in but it’s not usually the case since the amount of carbohydrate rich food we consume is truly overwhelming for the system. There’s many more I could add to this list but I felt these one’s I often see being unquestioned.