“You don’t have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces—just good food from fresh ingredients.” Julia Child
We all know we should try to have better habits when it comes to food. And we know that while juggling kids, work, and life, healthy food can sometimes take a backseat. As busy mamas, we end up snacking on goldfish, relying on drive-throughs, and skipping food in favor of packaged items (hello LÄRABAR…). If you want to be healthy and raise healthy kids, you have to start with food!
No matter if you have a picky eater, a massive sweet tooth, or no cooking knowledge, these 5 healthier eating tips for busy mamas – no matter your style of eating.
1. Take Small Steps
Eating healthier is going to require you to change your habits; Giant changes rarely stick in our lives so remember to start with small steps. We are creatures of habit, so we fall back into our old ways easily. Offer yourself small steps so that you can accomplish your overall task. For example, do you want to eat more vegetables? Take a day to count how many servings of vegetables you eat. For the next week, add one more serving. Just one more. Remember that small steps lead to great change.
2. Remember, You Are the Gatekeeper
While at the grocery store, remember that you are the gatekeeper to what comes into your home. If you are trying to cut back on processed foods, then don’t purchase any at the store. Don’t use the excuse that it is an item for someone else in the family; if you aren’t willing to eat it, why would you feed it to a loved one? You are the gatekeeper. You decide what is in your kitchen.
3. Change Your Kitchen Landscape
Your produce should be on your kitchen counter and on the eye-level shelf in the fridge. Nuts, seeds, and dried fruits like dates and figs should be in clear containers on your counters so you can see health snack options first, before ever opening the pantry.
4. Cook at Home
While cooking can seem daunting, you can control exactly what goes into your food when you prepare the food yourself. Try cooking in large batches so that you can rely on healthy left-overs; immediately store those left overs in individual containers so you can easily grab lunch the next day. How often do you prepare your own dinner per week? Great! Add 1 more day to that for the next month.
5. Turn Off All Screens
Choose to eat without any screens. Focus completely on what you are eating. What does it taste like? Smell like? Can you describe the texture? Be fully aware of what you are eating with each bite. In order to do so, disconnect from screens – yes, even your phone. Do not simply “eat”, but concentrate on the task. What are you really experiencing?