Reducing our children’s intake of sugar can be a challenge. However, with Andrea’s strategies below, you will be equipped with the proper tools for success!
If you have kids, tell us which tip you’re going to try – or maybe already did! Remember to use the hashtag #BarbarasSugarReset!
~ The Barbara’s Team
Even if you are vigilant at home about how much added sugar your children eat, they are exposed to sugary foods everywhere—at school, in commercials, with their friends, and yes, grandparents! As a mom to three kids, I know this all too well.
One question I’m often asked is “how can we effectively reduce the amount of sugar our kids eat?” Admittedly that can be a challenge. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try, because the downsides of too much sugar in our children’s diet can lead to a greater risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, behavioral and learning problems, and suppressed immunity, all of which can follow them for a lifetime.
So what can you do? First, set a shining example for your children. If you expect your kids to lower their sugar intake, then show them it’s easy by doing the same. Letting children help prepare foods that are lower in sugar is also an opportunity for them to learn while feeling involved in the process.
If your children are anything like mine, they don’t like to be told they can’t eat something, so provide them with alternatives and present them in a positive way. Another important tip is to make your sugar reduction changes gradual. Going cold turkey may be too hard for your kids, especially if they are used to having it often.
Here are a few lower-sugar alternatives you can try with your kids.
- Instead of ice cream, try mashed frozen bananas. Frozen bananas thaw quickly and can be whipped up fast for a sweet treat.
- Instead of flavored fruit yogurt, buy plain yogurt and add your own fresh fruit and nuts.
- Instead of sugary cereals, look for options that contain whole-grains and less sugar than the leading brands, like Barbara’s Snackimals.
- Instead of a candy bar, cut up an apple into slices and dip them in melted dark chocolate (or dip strawberries).
- Instead of refined sugar, use applesauce when baking. Here’s an opportunity for children to help you with the recipe and learn how to substitute the fruit for the sugar.
Make going lower-sugar fun! Ask your kids to help you uncover the hidden sugars in foods in your house. Take them with you to the grocery store and ask them to read labels of foods they want and to tell you how much sugar is in them. Sometimes seeing it for themselves can make all the difference.
 Ask Dr. Sears. Harmful effects of excess sugar. http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/feeding-eating/family-nutrition/sugar/harmful-effects-excess-sugar
Andrea Donsky, B. COMM, is an Author, Registered Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.), Editor-in-Chief, and Founder of NaturallySavvy.com. Her passion is to inspire people to make enlightened choices for healthy living. Andrea has combined her background and expertise as both a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and an entrepreneur to educate the public on living an organic and non-GMO lifestyle through the creation of her businesses, books, articles, videos, speeches, and media appearances.