Taste the Rainbow

Would you attend birthday party that served kale and banana smoothies instead of cake? Would you do so without rolling your eyes at the mother’s choice of sweet tooth offerings?

The foods we love come down to culture and learned behavior. If you’re addicted to sugar, you’re going to keep craving it. A little bit of sugar might sweeten your day, but having it on a regular basis is a recipe for disaster. And guess what? Pretty much everything that’s processed contains massive amounts of sugar. Why feed our kids foods that cause illness? The best way to get them to eat better is to make it a lifestyle and to teach them while they’re young.

Healthy Alternatives for Kids

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If your baby loves anything pink (i.e. Nestle’s strawberry milk, or a Strawberries and Cream Starbucks frappuccino), you can substitute them for a blend of real strawberries, ice, and coconut milk. For the chocolate version, swap the berries for a small amount of cocoa powder, and dates.

Additionally, there is no need to add ranch dressing to your vegetables. There are a lot of ways to make hummus, each of them lending themselves to being tweaked to accommodate most people’s palates. You can play around with colors too: include avocado to make green hummus, use beets for red, carrots for orange, turmeric for yellow, purple cauliflower for… you guessed it! Purple hummus!

Peanut butter, banana, and cinnamon on whole wheat toast is sweet and will provide a whole lot of nutrition: Vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin E, fiber, potassium, and protein.

Adding Exercise to the Mix

The same way eating healthy is learned behavior, so is our relationship with exercise. If you grew up sitting on a couch, watching television all day, going outside for a run will not sound appealing. But what if you have memories of dashing through a fun color run 5K with your mom? What if you signed up your kids for the runDisney kid races and dressed them up as their favorite characters? They have diaper dashes and one mile races; and so much fun can be incorporated into them! You can also get creative without having to leave your home.

So let’s build a solid foundation for our kids to grow up healthy, active individuals. Put down those M&Ms. Setting a good example starts with you and the future is in your hands.

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Connect with me at or follow my book Smart Cookie, Recipes for Raising a Genius  on Facebook @SmartCookieRecipes, or Instagram @SmartCookieRecipes.

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