Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Healthy Bodies—On the Go!

Positive Modeling & Promotion of Healthy Bodies – A Four Part Series with Pediatric Obesity Specialist Dr. Dyan Hes

Part Four—On the Go!

We’ve so enjoyed our series with Dr. Dyan Hes; we learned about activity, portion control and the basics of preventive approaches to keep kids and families healthy. For our final installment (unless Dr. Hes agrees to come back again!), we’ll cover the challenge of how to maintain modeling and provide healthy options while on the go. We know Sassy families are hopping and bopping a lot!

Dr. Jen: Parents have to juggle so much in a typical day. Sometimes the only options that seem to be available are quick fast food. Can you provide us with some simple tips for on the go snacking?

Dr. Hes: I think that a huge challenge for parents is avoiding the temptations of unhealthy snacks and sweet drinks, especially when you are on the go. We all know that it would be so easy just to pull up to a drive thru and order a snack for our children or run into the corner store for a quick snack & drink after school. Even young kids watching cartoons or seeing friends eat are bombarded by advertising for sweetened cereals and snacks everywhere they turn. What I recommend is that parents cut up fresh fruits and vegetables at night and pack them up in a snack dish to go. You can also do this with low fat cheese, high fiber cereals and whole grain crackers. Kids love finger foods and love the independence of feeding themselves.

Dr. Jen: That all sounds great, but when you’re exhausted and running out the door, remembering to cut strawberries and pack whole grain cereal isn’t always easy! What do you suggest for the busy parent when the planning itself is a challenge?

Dr. Hes:
Plan, plan, plan ahead and double time it! When you’re making dinner the night before, think ahead as to the plans for the next day. Cut up some extra safe foods and put into a to-go cup. Take some of last night’s chicken and so the same. Think of how to double up the planning while cutting the time in half. Remember to do the same for you while you plan for your child.

Dr. Jen: What about juice? Everyone asks us about that!

Dr. Hes
: What’s supposed to be in a sippy cup? I loved your post on Juice, Dr. Jen and everything you said was right on the mark. Fill them with water to be ready to grab when you need to leave the house in a rush. The majority of overweight children become overweight from juice. Parents are fooled into thinking that juice is healthy by deceptive marketing, labeling it as “natural”. Juice is sugar water and all the fiber is removed in the process. This way, whether you are out carpooling or just running errands, you can feel secure that you packed some healthy treats for your child and avoided the junk.

Dr. Jen: Dr. Hes… you ROCK! We loved this time with you and hope you’ll come back again!

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