Friday, September 17, 2010

Cooking with Your Kids is a Start to Healthy Living

We're heard it all too many times.  Childhood obesity is a reality in America.  Fortunate are we to have resources like Nutrition Interactive, Sajai Foundation, and Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution, to name just a few, that inspire us to eat healthier and get active.  I say we take all that good information that's out there and bring it home into the kitchen.  Cooking with your kids, though it may sound a little cumbersome at times, is great fun for them, but more than that, it is beginning of a lifelong appreciation for good eating.

Now, they may think good eating is getting that toy at McDonald's or the school lunches that offers pizzas, mini hot dogs and burgers.  That's normal.  It's also the problem.  Good nutrition starts at home with education, experimentation and exploration to eating new foods and making the right choices.

You're in control of what your child eats.  Cooking with them offers the "activity" that they crave, so make it fun, interesting, and most of all, eat up and be well.

The benefits of cooking with kids:
  • Encourages eating together
  • Introduces the entire family to try a new dish
  • Instills the importance of eating healthy
  • Gives kids the satisfaction and pride of being part of a "project"
Tips on cooking with kids:
  • Shop together 
  • Give them a kitchen task they can complete
  • Allow them to experience the whole process - from beginning to end
  • Encourage them to suggest a new ingredient
  • Clean up together
  • Eat together and enjoy the fruits of your labor