Do you feel like your kids get too much sugar? I didn’t feel that way until a long winter of illness and lack of vigilance on my part, coupled with various holidays, led to an overload of treats in my house. It’s time to get back to the basics and get out of the sugar habit. Of course, I don’t mind the kids having some yummy treats. After all, life is for enjoying, right? When my children do have treats, I want them to be REAL food, though. No one needs processed, High Fructose Corn Syrup laden, artificial colored junk food on a regular basis. I used to be proud to say my children’s treats were high fiber muffins or one small square of dark chocolate. Lately I just can’t say that, if I’m being honest with myself. So, here is what I plan to do to break this bad habit and get back to the basics:
- Throw out any leftover Easter Candy. It’s all junk anyway and we don’t need it.
- Don’t buy treats in the first place. Leave it at the store where it belongs.
- Use sweet but more nutritious snacks as we wean ourselves off the sugar, like raisins and organic graham snacks.
- When it’s time for a treat, we will make our own. Our bodies are made to process REAL food, not chemicals. We will make whole wheat banana muffins with a few dark chocolate chips thrown in. We love to make whole wheat dark chocolate chip cookies with all natural butter. This way, the kids will get fiber and anti-oxidants while enjoying a sweet treat. They can also help in the kitchen, which they love to do.
- Read labels carefully. Some yogurts, for example, have as much sugar as half a can of soda or more. Choose packaged snacks that contains less than 10 grams of sugar per serving.
- Avoid fruit juice. My son loves apple juice, but I only let him have it a couple of times a week. I also buy the reduced sugar apple juice that is half the sugar of regular juice. Eat fresh fruit instead.
Here are a couple of recipes to help you break the sugar habit:
Easy Banana Muffins – These muffins are so easy to make. I use whole wheat flour instead of white. Add dark chocolate chips for a real treat!
Whole Wheat Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies – Again, this is a really easy recipe. We use dark chocolate chips because they contain anti-oxidants and are usually lower in sugar. Read labels when you choose your ingredients.
Breaking the sweets habit isn’t easy but it’s doable. We’ve done it before, and we’ll do it again. Teaching children moderation will help them make healthy choices as adults! Good luck breaking your sweet tooth. Tell me, what habits do you practice to limit your family’s sugar intake?